Bacon Brussels (with vegan and vegetarian options)

There is one thing everyone needs to know about me, I love vegetables. I was not always like this though, believe it or not I was not particularly fond of them as a child. I did not like cooked vegetables at all, I preferred my vegetables to be raw with ranch and for them all to be carrots. I did like spinach and broccoli, but never ever cooked. It wasn’t until I got older when I started to appreciate vegetables, in fact it was when I moved out and got married (how convenient, right mom?).

Today, I feel like I can’t get enough of them. If I go one day without eating enough vegetables, my body starts to crave them; usually the next day that is all I eat. Eating a lot of vegetables can get, I think, a little boring at times. I have gotten in ruts where I would cook the same variety of vegetables in the same way, so I have learned to mix things up a bit to keep things interesting.

Three years ago, when I moved to the east coast, I decided to try a new vegetable, and I am so thankful I did! Can you guess what they were? Maybe by the title? Yes, they were brussel sprouts, and now they are my favorite vegetable! Another quirk of mine is that there are certain textures that my mouth does not like, and that is mushy. I cannot eat a lot of mushy food (bananas, avocados, cooked squashed), or I’ll gag. It is not very pleasing, so I normally roast my vegetables until they have nice crisp edges and still a little tender. With that, I’ll leave you with this recipe that is perfect for Thanksgiving!

INGREDIENTS: 

4 cups quartered brussel sprouts

7 pieces of bacon

1/4 teaspoon garlic salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

DIRECTIONS: 

  1. Set your broiler on. I set mine on high, but you do what you are comfortable with. While the broiler is heating up line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and place the bacon strips on the baking sheet. Broil one side for aproximately 6-8 minutes, turn the bacon and place back under the broiler for another 3-5 minutes.
  2. When the bacon is done cooking set them a side on a plate with a paper towel to cool. Set the oven for 425 degree Fahrenheit and chop the brussels into fourths and place them onto the pan the bacon was on. Toss so that all the brussels are all covered in that goodness. Arrange the brussels in a singl layer and bake for 25 minutes.
  3. While the brussels bake go ahead and chop the bacon into bite size pieces. When the brussels finish baking take them out of the oven and mix in the bacon pieces. Finally, sprinkle them with salt and pepper and viola there you have it bacon brussel sprouts.

VEGAN AND VEGETARIAN OPTIONS: 

  1. Instead of bacon grease use 2 tablespoons of any oil. My oil of preference is extra virgin olive oil.
  2. I would up the salt intake to a half teaspoon garlic salt and leave the ground pepper the way it is.
  3. If you love garlic like I do, I would also add 3 cloves of minced garlic to this dish.

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