This summer I tested out a daring, new recipe. Well, it was daring and new to me. It was a green vegetable, so THAT was daring in and of itself!

In an attempt to incorporate more vegetables into my diet, I tried Brussels Sprouts! Being part of the cabbage family, Brussels Sprouts tend to get a bad rap. I’ll admit, I was in that camp.

However, here is website that has tons of positive things to say about Brussels Sprouts.

In the spring we tried roasted Brussels Sprouts with bacon and apples. That was yummy! It did have bacon in it.

Since that recipe was a success with everyone, we went bold and tried the stuffed Brussels Sprouts.

I found the recipe on Pinterest which led me here.

Stuffed Brussels Sprouts 2

Let me just say, I thought these would be a lot harder to make than they were.

Most of these pictures are from the first time we made them. I made them again for our Christmas dinner. I was just too busy fixing the food to photograph it.

(The family went to see The Secret Life of Walter Mitty the other night. There is a line in the movie where a photographer is talking about taking a picture or not taking a picture.  “Sometimes, it’s just for me” was the gist of the statement. That’s kinda how I felt about Christmas “blog photos”. Anyway, I ‘m rambling!)

Jerry James Stone does a great job of explaining exactly how to prep the Brussels Sprouts. He even has a little video on his blog.

Now, at my little semi-super Walmart we don’t always have a large selection of, well, anything. All I could find the first time I made these was frozen Brussels Sprouts-and they weren’t particularly large.

I actually thought that was okay, because I didn’t really have high hopes. I thought, the smaller, the better–less “green” taste.

Prepping Stuffed Brussels Sprouts

Turns out, when stuffing Brussels Sprouts, bigger is better–so is fresh rather than frozen. The picture above is of my nice, large, fresh sprouts from Sam’s.

The frozen ended up tasting good. (That’s why we made them again.) They were just a little harder to handle.

stuffing

And handle you must!

kitchen helper

The recipe calls for 15 large sprouts. Since I knew how yummy these turned out the first time, I made extra. I sure had plenty since I had bought mine at SAM’S!

I did not, however, increase the filling proportions. When I made this recipe this summer, I had quite a bit of the filling left over.

I didn’t go exactly by the recipe on the original recipe. (See link above)

stuffed and ready

Stuffed Brussels Sprouts

15-30 large, fresh Brussels Sprouts

1 cup Whole Milk Ricotta cheese

1 cup shredded Parmesan

1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs-this is key! The Panko breadcrumbs add more crunch than regular breadcrumbs.

3 cloves minced garlic

1 T dried thyme

1 T dried basil

1 t. dried sage

1 t. salt

Olive Oil

(The original recipe called for 1 t. marjoram but I didn’t have any, so I skipped it.)

•Trim Brussels Sprout stems and cut in half length-wise.

•Blanch sprouts. (To blanch: Drop sprouts into boiling water for a couple of minutes-literlly about 2 minutes. Transfer from boiling water to a bowl of ice water.)

•Scoop out middle of the sprouts, leaving enough for a shell wall. (Watch the video for help on this.)

•Finely chop sprout middles.

•Sauté chopped sprouts with minced garlic in olive oil until everything is tender and smells really good!

•Mix your garlic-sprout mixture with the other ingredients.

•Use a spoon to fill the sprout shells with the mixture. You will have lots of mixture!

•Bake at 400˚ for 20 minutes or until golden on top.

I used a piece of parchment on my cooking sheet just to be sure there was no sticking.

Stuffed Brussels Sprouts

I am so glad I tried this recipe. I think it is a keeper! These would be great to take to your New Year’s Eve party. Surely people are getting tired of rich, heavy food. They are ready to at least think healthy!

Critics’ Corner

Chip: The “stuffed” part of this dish was really good. The Brussels Sprout part tasted too much like Brussels Sprouts.

Megan: I think this batch was a little more herb-intensive than the last, but either way, these tasty little things are definitely winners.

Katie: Everyone is always like, “OOOOoooo! Brussels Sprouts! Let’s feed this to the dog!” Ha-ha-ha NO!  Wait’ll they try these! They have this nice blend and blast of flavor.

You’ll eat ’em, to be polite.

You’ll have some more, to be polite.

You will be very polite.

Trust me on this one. : )

Mashed potatoes. My family loves them! When we have mashed potatoes, I usually make enough to have leftovers. I guess you could call them “planned-overs”.  Sometimes those good intentions end up as a slimy, pink and gray mass in the back of the refrigerator in a plastic container that nobody wants to open!

No more!

The other night I decided to try something with my extra mashed potatoes. Violá! A new family favorite was born. Corn and Bacon Potato Patties.

Corn and Bacon Potato Patties

You can heat your potatoes first if you like. Just don’t heat them up too much. You want to be able to handle them without scorching your hands.

All I did was mix a little corn and bacon into my already delicious mashed potatoes. I think I may have added a little onion, too, and maybe some cheese, hmmm. Be creative with your own add-ins.

Form the mixture into patties. You can make them as big or as small as you like. Mine were kinda medium. I know that tells you a lot.

Beat an egg or two, depending on how potato patties you are making. Dip the patties in the beaten egg then cover them with Panko breadcrumbs. The Panko bread crumbs are the key, well, except for that other stuff. But the Panko bread crumbs are much crunchier than regular breadcrumbs.

Fry ’em up in the pan until golden. (I think I used canola oil.)

Enjoy!

Critics’ Corner

Chip: “I love this dish. It’s a combination of mashed potatoes and fried potatoes nicely encased in a crunchy breading. I’ve requested that when the chef prepares mashed potatoes that she prepare more than necessary on purpose so that we will have left over mashed potatoes with which to make these little gems. They are wonderful.”

Megan: I think this is my new favorite way to eat potatoes.

Katie: Awesomeness just waitin’ to happen! Yummy!

In my great attempt to become more organized and actually try some of those recipes I have ripped out of magazines, I found this recipe…

It looked so good to me that I found FIVE of these magazine ads in my stash! UGH!

I don’t know why I found it so appealing. I am not a particular fan of mayo. I like it okay if it is mixed in something, like potato salad. I don’t ever slather it on my sandwich or dip my french fries in it.

This time it is used to hold on breading, so I think that is acceptable.

Since I was up to my elbows in mayonnaise while making this, I didn’t dare touch the camera! Sorry, no “in progress” pictures.

Hellmann’s Parmesan Crusted Chicken

1/2 cup Hellmann’s Mayonnaise

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

4 tsp Italian seasoned dry bread crumbs

Combine mayonnaise and cheese.

Spread on chicken, then sprinkle with bread crumbs.

Bake at 425˚ for 20 minutes.

Ok, now let me tell you how I did it.

First of all, I hate it when recipes call for Parmesan cheese and don’t specify dried or fresh. When in doubt, go fresh! I hardly ever use “shaky cheese”.

These are the breadcrumbs I used.

Panko breadcrumbs give a nice crispy coating. I like to get plain breadcrumbs. Then I can have them seasoned or plain.

I did add a little Italian seasoning. How much? Ummmm, until it looked right.

I found it easiest to get my hands dirty when adding the mayo. I just rubbed it all over the chicken. A half cup was actually a little more than I needed.

I made sure that the chicken was covered really well with the breadcrumbs so it would be good and crunchy!

Bake as directed.

Oooo! Ahhhh! So savory! So yummy!

Critics’ Corner

Chip: 10/10 would eat again

Megan: I absolutely loved it!!!!!!!!

Katie: Loved it! LOVE OF MY LIFE! I enjoyed every single bite!