Sauteed Brussels sprouts that have a little bit of everything, salty bacon, sweet fig jam and tangy blue cheese!
Fig Newtons are the most disappointing cookie ever. In fact, they shouldn’t even call themselves a cookie. The definiton of a cookie is “a small, sweet cake”. Technically speaking, Fig Newtons fall into this category. However, my cookie definition is a sweet that is small, round, loaded with butter, sugar and sometimes chocolate.
All my life I avoided eating figs because of the aforementioned cookie. The meer mention of the word fig reminded me of the seedy newton filling. Then somewhere along the way I got a wild hair and decided to try fig jam. As the saying goes, the rest was history.
I rarely use fig jam (or figs) in sweet recipes, perhaps someday I will. But for now, I think fig jam is my secret weapon when it comes to creating recipes that pair salty sweet flavors together as in this naan pizza or these stout coated wings. Fig jam works especially well when pitted against someting salty like bacon. The salt in the bacon enhances the sweetness of the figs while the jam brings out the salty flavors of the bacon. Which is exactly what happened in this easy side dish recipe.
I sauteed Brussels sprouts in the grease left over from cooked, chopped bacon (pancetta would be a great substitute if you are up for the splurge). After the sprouts turn golden and caramelized, I hit them with the sticky sweet fig jam and a bunch of fresh thyme. Just before serving a crumble of tangy blue cheese is sprinkled on top. This side dish will add a little sophistication and unique flavor to your table.
I still won’t go anywhere near a Fig Newton, but I have found that it is good to keep a jar of fig jam handy just in case a recipe needs a dollop of something sweet!
Sauteed Brussels Sprouts with Fig Glaze
Satueed Brussels sprouts that are filled with a tangy, salty and sweet flavor profile
- 3 strips bacon, chopped
- 1 1/2 lbs Brussels sprouts, halved
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 clove garlic
- 4 oz fig jam
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, minced
- 2 tablespoons blue cheese
- Heat a large sautee pan or cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until crisp, remove and set aside.
- Add halved Brussels sprouts to the same pan. Sprinkle with salt and stir. Cook until sprouts begin to caramelize and soften. Stir in garlic, jam and thyme.
- Transfer the Brussels sprouts to a serving dish and sprinkle with blue cheese just before serving.