Crispy Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Croutons
1 lb applewood smoked thick-cut bacon
1 loaf French Country bread, or other thick loaf for making croutons
2 lbs brussels sprouts, trimmed and quartered
2 Tbsp minced shallots
1 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
2-3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/2-1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
When ready to cook, set temperature to High and preheat, lid closed for 15 minutes. Place a large cast iron pan on the grill as grill preheats.
Use a serrated knife to cut the crust off the bread, then tear into 1-inch pieces.
When the grill is hot, cook the bacon in the cast iron pan until crispy on both sides, about 15-20 minutes. Cook in batches depending on the size of the pan.
When the bacon is cooked, remove from the pan but leave the drippings. Allow the bacon to cool, then coarsely chop or crumble the bacon. Set aside.
Place the croutons in the bacon drippings and stir to coat. Add a generous pinch of salt.
Close the grill and cook, stirring once or twice, until the bread is toasty, about 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and place the croutons on a plate.
While the croutons cook, place the Brussels sprouts, shallots, and thyme on a large baking sheet. Toss with the olive oil, 2 tsp of salt, and a generous grinding of pepper.
Place on the grill and cook with the lid down for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
When the Brussels sprouts are browned, add the balsamic vinegar and cook with the lid closed again until caramelized, 10-15 minutes longer. Remove from the heat.
Toss the sprouts immediately with the bacon and croutons and place in a serving dish. Sprinkle with Parmigiano Reggiano and drizzle with olive oil to serve.
Taste, adding more salt and pepper as needed. Serve immediately. Enjoy!
*Cook times will vary depending on set and ambient temperatures.
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