Roasted Brussel Sprouts and Grapes With Bacon
It doesn’t get much easier than this for a side that can either feed a crowd or the recipe can be halved for weeknight dinner. I always think that brussel sprouts do really well when roasted or pan fried in some sort of pork fat. Pancetta or bacon does wonders to adding flavour to the brussel sprouts. They add a hit of saltiness and they crisp up beautifully adding a nice chewy texture to this side dish. I also love that you don’t have to cook the bacon ahead of time - this is a no fuss - throw everything into a sheet pan- kind of side. My kind of recipe! These roasted brussel sprouts and grapes are absolutely delicious without the bacon if you want to keep things vegetarian though.
The Brussels sprouts soak up the delicious garlic, olive oil and bacon flavours while cooking in the oven to create a flavour combination you just cannot be beat. The grapes are the perfect addition as is the balsamic vinegar. They add a sweetness that brings out the nutty notes in the sprouts. The balsamic gets added to the pan after to help loosen up some of the crispy bits at the bottom of the pan. It too add some sweetness and tang to this dish.
We couldn’t get enough of it and I had to add a little crunch and a little creaminess to this side so I decided to follow Martha Stewart in her version of this dish and add chopped walnuts before serving. You can sub those out for almonds or any crunchy seed if you would like. The creaminess comes via the crumbled goat cheese. All the flavours come together to make this an amazing side dish for any occasion.
- 24 ounces (1.5lbs) Brussels sprouts ends trimmed (about 8 cups), halved or quartered, if large
- 24 ounces (1.5lbs) grapes
- 4 oz diced bacon or pancetta (approx. 4 strips of bacon)
- 4 cloves of garlic minced
- 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 tablespoons fresh thyme
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- ½ cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
- ¼ cup crumbled goat cheese
- Heat oven to 425°F.
- On 2 rimmed baking sheets, arrange brussels sprouts, grapes, garlic, and bacon. Drizzle with olive oil.
- Season with salt and pepper and thyme and toss well and spread mixture out in a single layer.Roast, until caramelized and tender, about 25-30 minutes.
- Drizzle each tray with 1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar and scrape up any caramelized bits with a wooden spoon. Toss in walnuts and serve sprinkled with the crumbled goat cheese
Adapted from Martha Stewart