I experienced Brussels sprouts for the very first time only about a year ago… and I’ve been hooked ever since. Thus, I’m constantly on the lookout for new ways to prepare them. Shredded, roasted, baked like chips, in Dijon, in balsamic vinegar, with bacon… you know the standard recipes.
This one is different, and so far, my absolute favorite way of preparing them. Green olives are such a striking complement and this recipe makes a sort of dressing out of the brine which I love.
Now I realize Brussels sprouts are controversial in that you either love them or hate them. They taste so strongly of “vegetable” that they can seem punishing and rewarding at the same time–the same way I feel about very dark chocolate or the bitterness of coffee or grapefruit. You might call it an acquired taste. But if you like Brussels sprouts at all and are feeling bored with the standard balsamic vinegar variation, give this a try. It’s a perfect side to any meat and potatoes type meal.
Green Olive and red pepper Brussels Sprouts
Yield: 4 side dish servings
- 12oz Brussels sprouts
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup red (or in my case, orange) pepper, chopped
- 1/8 cup diced onion
- 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons of green olives, sliced in half
- 2 tablespoons brine from the green olive jar
- Crumbled bacon or bacon bits for topping
Preheat oven to 400 °F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
Slice the sprouts in halves and toss in a bowl along with 2 teaspoons of the olive oil and the salt and pepper. Mix until sprouts are coated, then arrange them on the baking sheet, cut side down and so that they are not touching. Bake about 20 minutes, until tender.
Meanwhile saute the chopped red pepper, diced onion, and garlic in about 2 teaspoons olive oil on the stove over medium heat. Continue to cook until the onion is translucent and the peppers are tender, about 7 minutes. Set aside.
In a bowl, combine the pepper mixture with the Brussels sprouts. Add olives and bacon. Toss to combine.
In a separate bowl, whisk together 2 teaspoons olive oil and the olive brine. Pour over the vegetables and toss to combine.
Adapted from Sarah’s Cucina Bella.