Sunday, November 16, 2014

Maple Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Cranberries with Pecans and Goat Cheese

Can someone say, Perfect Thanksgiving Side Dish?!
Not only does this dish taste amazing along side turkey, but the colors make it so festive for the Holidays, too!

I will note, though, that if you want the cranberries to retain their pretty shape, you should roast them, or pan saute on the stove, in a separate pan from the Brussels, and for a shorter amount of time.
When I tossed them with the sprouts in the oven, the flavor was amazing, but they burst and turned into a cranberry sauce, which turns the whole dish red. 

Also, don't goat cheese, balsamic, and pecans just make any dish even better?!  I think so.

Have you guys ever seen Brussels sprouts still on the stalk?! Trader Joe's sells them this way every fall, and they have always fascinated me!  For this recipe, I was bringing the dish to a "Friendsgiving" dinner party, so I knew I needed to buy a lot of sprouts.  This proved to be the perfect opportunity to buy these crazy guys! I felt like such a dork with two 2.5' tree branches hanging out of my grocery basket (along with an equally tall baguette, as well!), but I rolled with it, and took these bad boys home.

You just cut each sprout off the stalk, and then ditch the outer leaves, rinse well, and half or quarter, just like any other Brussels sprout.

Adapted from: Rachel Schultz

Serves 12 - dinner party size. Half or Quarter recipe for regular, small dinner recipe


8-10 cups Brussels Sprouts - rinsed, trimmed, and halved or quartered
1 1/2 cups fresh, whole cranberries - rinsed
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup maple syrup
Olive oil
Salt & pepper
1/3 cups crumbled goat cheese
1/2 cup pecans, halves or roughly chopped into pieces

Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Line two large cookie sheets (ones with edges) with foil for easy clean up later.
Trim Brussels sprouts - cut off end, peel off loose and bad-looking outer leaves. Rinse well. Dry well. Cut larger ones in quarters, cut small ones in half.
Put all into large bowl.
Toss Brussels sprouts with a good drizzle of olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Coat well.
Lay out in a single even layer over cookie sheets. Don't pack too tight or layer, or they will steam, instead of crisp.

Spread cranberries either among the sprouts, or on their own baking sheet.
(See notes above. Take cranberries out after about 15 minutes, before they get too soft, if you want them to retain their pretty shape. I left them in, among the sprouts, and they turn into a cranberry sauce)

Cook about 25 minutes, or until browned - turning once, to get them evenly browned and crispy.

Take that same large bowl and add the balsamic and maple syrup. Whisk into a dressing, and taste. Can add more syrup or vinegar if too tart or too sweet.

Remove sprouts and cranberries from oven, and add to bowl. Toss well in dressing..
Toss in pecans.

Place mixture into serving dish. I used an 8x8x2 dish.
Top with goat cheese.