Sometime in Jong's past, before he met me, he learned to hate brussel sprouts. His mother used to serve him boiled to mush - unseasoned, smelly, heinous brussel sprouts and it continued to be reinforced throughout his life that they were disgusting. I struggle to draw him into my love of cooked vegetables because of this bias but... challenge accepted!
I believe that there's nothing you can't get people to eat with enough bacon and cheese. Prepared this way, the sprouts are caramelized by the heat and lose much of their odoriferous smell.
By the end of it, my Father-in-Law and Jong were asking for that "bacon dish". But they had consumed seconds and thirds of the sprouts along the way. Victory is sweet my friends.
3 cups brussel sprouts, washed and halved lengthwise
1/4 c olive oil
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tbsp fresh ground black pepper
1 tbsp cayenne
3 cloves garlic, minced
zest from one lemon plus 1 tablespoon of lemon juice.
half to one cup of crispy cooked bacon (depending on how desperate your situation is)
1/2 cup Parmesan-Reggiano cheese finely grated
Combine the first 7 ingredients in a ziplock bag.
Zip up the bag then massage to mix. Let sit for 30 mins to 3 hours.
Pour onto parchment paper on a baking sheet.
Bake in preheated oven at 400 degrees F for 20 minutes or until most are golden brown, and some stray leaves are crispy.
In the last 5 minutes, add the bacon so it warms with the sprouts.
Distribute cooked sprouts nicely onto your serving plate, and season with more salt and pepper to taste.
Top with grated parmesan cheese before serving immediately.
- Use real Parmesan-Reggiano, or don't bother at all. The Kraft cheese will do more damage than help as it doesn't melt.
- You can stir or shake it onces part way through, but it's not necessary.