Roasted Brussels sprouts are vegetable candy on their own, but with the addition of crumbled, date-candied beef bacon, they are superlative. Use kosher beef bacon basted with silan (date honey) and maple syrup for an irresistible umami-sweet crunch.
Brussels roasted in the oven with olive oil and salt need no further embellishment, as far as I'm concerned, but—I'm sure there's a Yiddish saying for this—we should definitely still go over the top and add candied bacon to them. Maple is already a good friend to bacon, but the addition of silan, also called date honey, adds another note of flavor that works so well with the beefy bacon and Brussels. These are great for a Shabbat dinner and would be home on your Thanksgiving table, too.
Roasting the Brussels sprouts
They go into the oven green, they come out shriveled, golden-crisp, and caramelized. I find that 375F / 190C is the ideal temp for roasting Brussels, because it cooks them so they're nice and soft without burning the tender outer leaves. About 30 minutes should do it for this dish (like in the photo, top right); you can leave them a little more if you like them extra caramelized (*raises hand*).
Making the candied bacon crumble
I like using specifically beef bacon (also called beef fry) in this recipe, although turkey bacon would also work. I use Jack's Gourmet, which is called Facon (ha)—the package is pictured in the photo above top right. To candy up your bacon, you'll whisk together silan (date honey) and maple syrup and brush it over the cooking bacon.
Assembling the dish
After your bacon is nice and crisp and candied, let it cool enough to handle and crumble it over the roasted Brussels sprouts.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Date-Candied Bacon Crumbles (meat)
- 4 oz. kosher beef bacon - 1 package
- 1 Tbsp silan
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- 2 lbs Brussels sprouts - 1 bag
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- salt - to taste
Roast the Brussels sprouts:
- Preheat oven to 375°F / 190°C. Line a sheet pan.
- Slice the Brussels sprouts in half and place on the sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil and salt and roast for 30 min or so, until crispy and browned.
Meanwhile, prepare the bacon:
- Whisk together the maple syrup and silan in a small bowl.
- Heat a grill pan (or skillet) with a small amount of oil over medium heat. Add the bacon, in batches. Baste the first side of the bacon with the maple-silan mixture using a pastry brush. When crisped, flip the bacon over and baste on the second side. Remove to a plate to cool.
Assemble the dish:
- Crumble the bacon over the roasted Brussels sprouts and toss.