These Dijon braised Brussels sprouts are delicious. I’ve made this particular recipe several times over the past month, and every time, people have asked for the recipe. One important disclaimer here: my friends like Brussels sprouts. Even if you aren’t a huge fan of them though, I think this dish will convince you that they are a vegetable worth eating, at least when braised with Dijon mustard and dried apricots.
Candice Kumai was on the very first season of Top Chef. Back when it was good and not just another soapy reality TV show. She was eliminated pretty quickly, but managed to do just fine for herself as “the sexy chef”. For reasons that defy any explanation, I have three of her cookbooks. I guess because, who doesn’t want to be a sexy chef? On the other hand, I am not entirely certain that a sexy chef also cooks delicious food. Until this summer I had never done more than mark some of her recipes as ones to try, so it seemed only fair that her cookbook “Cook Yourself Sexy” be among the first set tested. Given the success of this recipe among friends, the sexy chef wins her first round, although last night I had better molasses & Dijon braised Brussels sprouts from the Flying Pig in Oceanside, CA so there’s some room to improve these.
The recipe is pretty flexible and forgiving; you should definitely experiment if you’re inclined – for instance, if you are like a certain man who doesn’t like contrasting textures, just leave out the slivered almonds. Or, if you aren’t vegetarian, you probably like bacon – so chop some cooked bacon up, and toss it in. However, one place where I would not recommend experimenting is with the mustard. I thought this dish might taste as good with miso instead of mustard. It absolutely does not. Keep the mustard.
- 2 tablespoons Dijon (or stone-ground) mustard
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (or avocado oil)
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts
- ½ cup almonds, slivered*
- ½ cup dried apricots, julienned**
- 6 slices bacon, cooked and chopped into slivers (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350 F
- In a small bowl, whisk the first 5 ingredients together.
- Julienne the Brussels sprouts. I used the "julienne cutting disk" on my food processor, which is easier than trying to finely chop these by hand.
- In a 9x13'' pan or baking sheet, combine the Brussels sprouts, almonds, and apricots.
- Drizzle the vinaigrette over the Brussels sprouts, toss to combine.
- Spread the veggies evenly over the baking pan, place in oven, and roast for about 60 minutes. Stir midway through cooking to ensure all the pieces get crispy. Sprouts should be tender and golden brown. If you are adding bacon, add your chopped, already-cooked bacon about 20 minutes before roasting is finished.
*I buy my almonds pre-slivered from Trader Joe's, because they offer nuts at a cheap enough price to justify not taking the time to blanch and chop the almonds yourself. Having blanched my own almonds once, I'm very happy to spend the extra dollar to avoid having almond skins all over my kitchen again.
**If you don't have any dried apricots, try with dried cranberries or sliced Granny Smith apple. Also note that dried apricots are pretty sticky and not exactly easy to julienne. Just chop them into thin strips to the best of your ability, and place them loosely into the cup measure (i.e. don't pack them in).