Last Sunday, The Boy and I headed to the Dupont Circle Farmers Market after reading a tweet from FreshFarm Markets saying figs would be there. @FreshFarmMktsDC did warn that the fig supply was limited, so we got there early and split up to find the elusive figs. Why such a rush to find figs you ask? Well, I’ve never had a fig, fresh or otherwise. Fig Newtons always looked like they had dirt stuck in the middle of them. Not that I never ate dirt…I just didn’t want to mix it with my cookies. And well, figs aren’t really common in Georgia. But Joy kept going on and on about the loveliness of this little fruit and how I had to try them. Well, we got to the market and sure enough, I found a container of fresh figs for $5. I snapped up one of the only 6 boxes on display and rose them up in a declaration of victory. Okay, maybe I didn’t do that last part. But I was happy…I just didn’t have a clue what to do with them.
While I was on the hunt for figs, it was The Boy’s job to get a hold of some of the season’s first brussels sprouts. He returned with this:
And I looked at him like he was insane.
“What the hell is that?” I asked, looking at the big ass jingle bell stick jutting from his shopping bag.
“It’s the brussels sprouts you wanted,” he responded, looking quite pleased with himself.
“Those aren’t brussels sprouts. You’ve stolen the Jolly Green Giant’s walking stick,” I said, staring at the green appendage with confusion.
“I asked for brussels sprouts and they pointed at this. So I got two!”
“Two what? That’s not brussels sprouts. What am I supposed to do with a green stick. And why does the stalk smell like broccoli?” I said as I sniffed the log…right there at the farmers market.
Let’s just say the conversation kind of went on from there and involved me mostly repeating the Jolly Green Giant comment several times. When I got home, I looked up brussels sprouts and discovered they were in the same family as broccoli and did grow on the sides of long stalks. I didn’t read anything about the stalks themselves being edible, so I removed the buds from it. Since I had both figs and brussels sprouts, I decided to combine the two into a sautee with bacon serving as the binder. It was simple, it was quick and it was fan-fucking-tastic. I ate it as a light lunch but it would also work very well as a side dish, especially for Thanksgiving (which according to Wal-Mart’s aisle, is next week).
Recipe: Brussels Sprout, Bacon & Figs
- 2 pounds brussels sprouts
- 6 strips of bacon, diced
- 4 fresh figs, cut into small pieces
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Wash the brussels sprouts and drain them. Carefully slice the sprouts lenghthwise into thin strips (it will resemble confetti).
- In a skillet over medium high heat, add the diced bacon and cook thoroughly. Remove the bacon bits from the skillet but leave the bacon grease. If the bacon produces an excessive amount of grease, remove some of it. You want enough to coat the pan and add flavor, but you don’t want the end result to be greasy.
- Add the brussels sprouts to the pan and then season with the salt and pepper. Add the fig pieces and stir to coat everything. Cook for about four minutes and then add the bacon. Once the sprouts become a vibrant green and begin to wilt slightly, the dish is done. Remove it from the heat and serve.
Cooking time (duration): 15
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