In South Louisiana, we truly have a penchant for taking healthy foods, most notably vegetables, and smothering them in some of the least healthy members in the food kingdom. This month we offer two Brussels sprouts recipes (one with pancetta and another with cream and oregano) that keep the smothering to a minimal but are quick and easy enough to whip up before rushing off to a party and require very little time gathering ingredients at the store.
Grab a stalk of Brussels sprouts, or a pre-packaged one-pound box if you’re in a rush. One pound feeds about four people, making it easy to double or triple a recipe for larger groups of people. Trim discoloration off the sprouts by chopping off the brownish parts near the stalk. For the recipes, visit www.theind.com/brusselssprouts. — ER
Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta This recipe creates a salty and savory side dish of sprouts baked in the pancetta drippings. Minus the cheese, a serving is only 90 calories, making it a delicious dish without a next-day bloat. Serves 4.
Ingredients: 1 lb Brussels sprouts, trimmed 1 T kosher salt 1/4 C chopped pancetta (or thick-cut bacon) fresh ground black pepper 1 t apple cider vinegar
Instructions: 1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. 2. Blanch Brussels sprouts. Cook the sprouts in boiling water approximately 6 minutes, or until tender, drain and place in ice water. 3. Fry pancetta over medium-low heat in a skillet until crisp. Separate the pancetta from the drippings and save both. 4. Cut Brussels sprouts into halves lengthwise and place flat side down on a baking sheet. Pour the pancetta drippings over the sprouts and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 15 minutes, stirring once after 10 minutes. 5. Combine sprouts, pancetta and vinegar in large bowl. Serve warm.
Brussels Sprouts with Cream and Oregano This recipe calls for fresh oregano (not dried), and the difference is immediately apparent. The cream is not the star of this dish but adds a distinct smoothness while the golden pine nuts provide a slight crunch. It’s surprisingly simple and requires very little effort. Serves 4.
Ingredients: 3 T butter 1/4 C pine nuts 1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half lengthwise 3/4 C chicken stock 1 shallot, minced 1 T fresh oregano, chopped 1/4 C whipping cream
Instructions: 1. Melt 1 T butter in large skillet and add pine nuts. Stir until golden, about 5 minutes. Remove from skillet and reserve. 2. Melt 1 T butter in same skillet and add sprouts. Stir 1 minute, then add broth, cover and simmer until sprouts are almost tender, about 5 minutes. Uncover and simmer for until the broth evaporates. 3. Push sprouts to the side of the skillet and melt 1 T of butter in the middle. Add the minced shallots and sauté until tender. 4. Stir in oregano and cream. Simmer and stir until all sprouts are covered with cream. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. 5. Transfer to serving platter and stir in half of the reserved pine nuts. Sprinkle the remaining nuts on top and serve warm.
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NOV 26 Zach Kopplin, who we came to know and love when he was a Louisiana high school student lobbying for the continued inclusion of science stuff in science class, pens this post in The Atlantic about a "textbook" available for social studies instruction in Texas that discusses how Moses contributed to the Constitution. (Oy! Texas rednecks love Jews. Who knew?)
NOV 26 Finally, mad people on the interwebz is a good thing! World wide webby outrage has caused the village of Moreauville to reverse its plan to confiscate pit bulls and Rottweillers and euthanize them simply because of their breed, WAFB reports here. The plan? They're going to enforce the lease law. Well - that would have been a good place to start.
NOV 26 Jim Brown, like many of us Louisiana voters, seems fed up with out of town know-it-alls trying to tell us what to do. Bill Cassidy can't make it through the day without flying someone in to "tell us political retards" how to vote, he says.
NOV 26 Blogger Tom Aswell is writing about the behavior of the two finalists in the 6th Congressional District race: Edwin Edwards and Garret Graves. Edwards has come out swinging, but Graves' campaign seems bent on snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, Tom says.
NOV 26 Unless you're in Virigina, you shouldn't count on seeing our Governor on Election Day. Mark Ballard writes in the Advocate's political blog that Bobby will be appearing at a GOP love fest of some kind there, instead of spending the day here.
NOV 26 This post on The Lens takes a look at the ongoing dispute in New Orleans over the banners about the upcoming tax election for the school system. The banners are hanging on schools, and some feel they are promotional, which is not allowed, instead of educational - which is allowed.
NOV 26 Not all college students are focused on football games and parties at this time of year. This post on DIG Baton Rouge recounts an LSU student group that tries to make sure that those who are hungry and homeless are not forgotten by those of us who aren't.
NOV 25 Edwin Edwards took off the gloves on Monday, this post on WAFB tells us. At a Press Club appearance, he wondered how his 6th Congressional District opponent, Garret Graves, could be an expert in all the areas in which he claims to be - when he has no college degree in anything. (Five years - FIVE YEARS - in college, but no degree. Huh?)
NOV 25 Blogger Mike Deshotels offers this primer on predatory charter schools and how they operate, specifically in Louisiana. They're not just profiting from our tax dollars, they're using children and shortchanging them to do so, Deshotels says.
NOV 25 Here's a link to the petition that has been created to save Zeus, a family dog who is targeted for death by the learned fathers of the Avoyelles Parish village of Moreauville. They passed an ordinance based on nothing that outlaws pit bulls and Rotweillers. As of Tuesday morning, the petition had more than 230,000 signatures - a number that's a wee bit higher than the village population of 929.