Saturday, November 1, 2014

Pan-charred brussels sprouts with roasted grapes, pecans & pecorino



Brussels sprouts have definitely emerged as a star veggie over the past few years.  I find them on so many small-plate, gastro-pubby menus these days and seem to quite happily order them every time.  They are such a yummy & nutritious fall & winter vegetable.  

I'm pretty sure they are now a staple dish on most Thanksgiving tables as well.  And it is now November, people, so it's go-time on planning "the big meal." This is definitely a dish to add to your list.  

The key to these tasty brussels is to caramelize the hell out of them. Don't be afraid of getting them super charred, brown & toasty.  Tossed with uber sweet roasted grapes, lots of crunchy toasted pecans & salty pecorino...it's a great flavor/texture combo.  You will love.

Serves 6

1 c. whole red or black grapes
2 large shallots - thinly sliced
1 t. olive oil
salt & pepper
3/4 c.  pecans - very roughly chopped

2 T. olive oil
1 pound brussel sprouts - trimmed and halved
1 T. butter
1 T. balsamic vinegar
1/4 c. grated pecorino

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 

On a small rimmed baking sheet, toss the grapes and sliced shallots with 1 t. olive oil.  Sprinkle with salt & pepper and place in oven.  Roast for 20 minutes, stirring one or twice throughout cooking.

Place pecans on another small rimmed baking sheet.  Add them to the oven with the grapes and shallots for their last 10 minutes of roasting in order to toast pecans.  Remove grapes & shallots and pecans. 

Preheat a 12-inch cast-iron skillet over medium low-heat on the stove for 5 minutes.  When warm, add 2 T. of olive oil and heat oil until hot.  Add the brussel sprouts to the pan, cut side down, in a single layer.  Increase the heat to medium/medium-high and let brussels cook, without stirring them, for 7 minutes - you are looking for a nice, deep brown char on them.

After 7 minutes, give them a stir, add 1 T. of butter, season with salt & pepper and cook 3-4 more minutes, stirring often, to caramelize the other sides of the sprouts.  Turn off heat, add 1 T. balsamic vinegar and toss to coat.

Add grapes & shallots, the toasted pecans, and pecorino to the skillet and toss to combine flavors.  Ready to serve!

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