Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Bacon

Can someone please tell me I’m not the only person still putting together their Thanksgiving menu?

It’s not a matter of procrastination. In fact, I’ve been planning our menu for weeks. Pumpkin scones, bacon wrapped dates, butternut soup… no, it’s not procrastination. It’s indecisiveness. I want to eat all the good things.

We’re celebrating Thanksgiving with friends and going halfsies on the menu. This is always easiest for us considering we have multiple food allergies to consider. I was given the go-ahead by my new allergist to start reintroducing a few of my weaker-positive foods but they want me to hold off on any wheat items until we can do an in-office food challenge in December. Knowing that the weight of dealing with multiple food allergies may soon be lifted from my shoulders is thrilling. Because really? One allergy is enough for this family.

Anyway, the one item I know I’ll be bringing to our shared table is roasted brussel sprouts. This dish has quickly become a hit and it’s my new go-to for potluck celebrations throughout the holidays. The recipe is so simple! I know some people are initially turned off by the thought of brussel sprouts but I promise that the combination of bacon and roasting changes the flavor from bitter to savory.

Did I mention how clean this recipe is? It’s paleo, gluten-free, and dairy-free.

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Ingredients.

3 pounds brussel sprouts, trimmed and halved
1/2 pound bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces (nitrate-free is preferred)
1 yellow onion, chopped
salt, pepper, garlic powder as desiredMethod.

In a large skillet, brown the bacon over medium heat until cooked but not crispy, stirring frequently. Remove the bacon and leave the grease. Add in the onion, cook over high heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the trimmed brussel sprouts and sauté for about 15 minutes or until the outside begins to brown. Combine the bacon with the brussel sprout mixture and spread evening on a roasting sheet. Cook at 350° for 10-15 minutes.

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Really, does it get simpler?

So, what’s on your Thanksgiving menu?

Are you traveling or sharing your table with friends?

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Sweet Potato Saturdays.

We’re falling into a nice routine with our autumn Saturday mornings that I could certainly get used to. The temperatures have been lovely and everyone seems to have calmed from the frenzy of summertime. For the second Saturday in a row, the girls have both slept in which has been a pleasant surprise each morning.

We picked up our CSA share and let the girls play for a bit while we chatted with other members and swapped recipe ideas. Our share this week is more or less identical to last week’s with the addition of some turnip greens and less the cucumber. Adding another eight pounds of sweet potatoes has necessitated some culinary creativity by yours truly.

After a short nap by the little one (this is day two without her pacifier and she’s still a bit shell-shocked, I think), J asked me if it would be alright if he took the girls outside to play while he did yard work.  I laughed in his face.  Would it be alright? Uh, yes. Please, proceed if you must. Somehow I’ll handle a few hours of silence with a kitchen full of goods practically begging to be prepared.

Commence cooking!

I love coming home and sorting through our CSA veggies. I feel like I’m a contestant on Iron Chef and I just discovered this week’s secret ingredients.

With a fresh bag of arugula, I found this recipe as inspiration for tonight’s dinner. The biggest, and I think best, change I made to the recipe was adding roasted sweet potatoes. I tossed them in 2 tablespoons coconut oil and added in thyme, sea salt and black pepper then roasted them on a foil-lined sheet at 350° for 20 minutes. Their creamy and savory flavor balanced the peppery taste of the arugula.

Simple bread recipe for a simple life.

I find it interesting to hear how other people began their journeys to live a simpler life, a return to a simpler time. Ours began with a loaf of bread.

When E was about 6 months old, and I unexpectedly found myself as a stay-at-home mom. Up until this point, I wasn’t terribly domestic and prided myself as a career-minded woman (not that you can’t be both, I just wasn’t). With E’s birth, it was as if my eyes were opened to how crooked our lives, priorities and health had become. Here was a blank slate of purity, a perfect little untarnished being. How was I going to raise her to guard the heart and health that was naturally gifted to her?

As I became more conscious of our lifestyle, I began reevaluating everything. Was it necessary? Was it honest? Was it good? One thing that caught me off guard was a loaf of bread. We had made the switch to whole wheat and assumed it was better for us. But in a loaf of traditional store-bought, 100% stone ground whole wheat bread, there is 23 ingredients. Twenty-three!

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