Brussels sprouts have become a staple on every holiday table, so why not make them the very best they can be!? Shaved brussels sprouts with bacon & cider syrup – quickly sautéed sprouts, crispy bacon, caramelized shallot, lots of lemon, crumbled manchego cheese, roasted hazelnuts, and a drizzle of sweet cider syrup. All the best flavors in one side dish!
shaved brussels sprouts – the details
To make a brussels sprout dish really good, you need something rich, something sweet, and something acidic. It’s the blend and balance of these flavors that pulls everything together and transforms a rather bitter, boring vegetable into something bursting with flavor.
Bacon is always a great go-to ingredient and for good reason. The rich, flavorful salty bite is the PERFECT base for an earthy vegetable. You’ll render the bacon down and use all of the drippings to sauté the shaved brussels sprouts. A really important tip is to sauté large amounts of vegetables in multiple batches, especially if you’re not working with the biggest pan or skillet. Overcrowding the pan will prevent the brussels sprouts from caramelizing.
A splash of vinegar and lemon juice bring the acidic component to the dish. You really need just a bit of brightness to make it all pop. You’ll add sharp manchego cheese and nutty, roasted hazelnuts on top for tasty pops of flavor and texture.
And then with the cider syrup drizzled over it all…it is truly such a wonderful holiday side dish!
If you’re looking for a salad option, try this roasted brussels sprout salad. It is JUST as good!Print
Warm Brussels Sprout Salad with Cider Syrup
shaved brussels sprouts with crispy bacon, manchego cheese, roasted hazelnuts, and sweet cider syrup
- 2 ½ cups apple cider
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 12 oz raw bacon, diced
- 2 lbs brussels sprouts, ends trimmed
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- olive oil
- kosher salt
- freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 4 oz manchego cheese, crumbled
- ½ cup chopped, roasted hazelnuts
- fresh thyme leaves, for topping
- Combine the apple cider and brown sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil the mixture for 2-3 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 35-40 minutes, or until thickened and syrupy. Turn the heat off and set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat a 12″ cast-iron skillet over medium-low heat. Add the bacon. Cook the bacon for about 15-20 minutes, stirring often, or until crisp.
- Cut each brussels sprout in half. Place the flat side of each brussels spout onto the cutting board. Use your knife to thinly shave them by cutting each sprout very thinly. Discard the roots.
- When the bacon is done, use a slotted spoon to transfer it to a plate lined with paper towels. Carefully pour the bacon fat out of the skillet, leaving roughly just 2 tablespoons. Add the shallots over medium heat. Sauté until tender and caramelized, 2-3 minutes. Transfer the shallots to a plate.
- Raise the heat to medium-high and add a drizzle of olive oil to the skillet. Once hot, add half of the brussels sprouts. Season with a pinch of salt and a few cracks of black pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes until tender and caramelized (but still bright green in color). Transfer them to a plate and repeat with the remaining brussels sprouts.
- Add the first batch of brussels sprouts and shallots back to the skillet. Stir in the apple cider vinegar and lemon juice. Cook for just another minute or so. Season with salt to taste.
- Transfer the brussels sprouts to a platter. Top with the manchego cheese, hazelnuts, and a pinch of fresh thyme. Drizzle the cider syrup over top.