Thanksgiving is only a few weeks away. People, this is a day that is completely dedicated to cooking and eating. There is no religious occasion that takes priority or gifts to distract -- this is solely a food day. Oh yeah, and thankfulness and the spirit of friendship and compromise or whatever.
And stretchy pants.
Consider adding Brussels sprouts to your side dish rotation. They're seasonal and simple to prepare. The fresh orange zest, cranberry and bacon in these will make any of your party guests love Brussels sprouts.
Did you know this is how Brussels sprouts grow? Little nodules on a heavy stem. It's nifty to see them on the stalk, isn't it?
Crisping the bacon renders beautiful fat, which you'll use to brown your sprouts.
A little color to start and then in go the cranberry and orange juice. Those cranberries will plump up before you know it with bacon-y orange goodness.
Orange Cranberry Brussel Sprouts with Bacon
1-11/2 lbs Brussels sprouts, halved
1 teaspoon olive oil
4-6 slices bacons, chopped
1/2 cup dried cranberries
Juice of 2 oranges
Zest of 1 orange
Salt and pepper
Heat oil over medium-high heat and add chopped bacon. Cook until crisp and remove from pan with a slotted spoon. Place on paper towel to drain.
Add sprouts to pan with bacon fat. Cook until edges begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Add orange juice to pan, scraping the bottom of the pan. Add cranberries and cover; reduce heat to medium and cook until sprouts are tender. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Toss with orange zest before serving.