Thanksgiving 2013: Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Glaze, Bacon Breadcrumbs, and Lemon Cream

Villians Tavern chef Vartan Abgaryan shares his secret recipe.
Thanksgiving 2013 is upon us. To usher in the season of endless eating and copious drinking, we’ve approached some of L.A.’s finest chefs and restaurants to get their recipes for the this year’s best side dishes and desserts, all inspired by Southern California’s bounty.

Brussels sprouts: somehow, we love them so much more now that we’re all grown up. Downtown’s Villains Tavern serves their sprouts with layers of flavor: a hit of balsamic glaze offsets a creamy lemon creme fraiche, while bacon breadcrumbs add crunch. Excess? Perhaps, but isn’t that what this holiday is all about?

Brussel Sprouts by Villians Tavern Chef Vartan Abgaryan

Serves 8


4 lbs Brussels sprouts, cleaned, trimmed, and quartered
2 cups bacon breadcrumbs (recipe follows)
1/2 cup balsamic reduction (recipe follows)
2 cups lemon creme fraiche (recipe follows)
1-2 quarts canola oil, for frying

Brussels Sprouts:
Heat oil to 350 (measure using a candy or fat thermometer)
Fry prepared sprouts in 2 batches. Using a spotted spatula, remove from oil and drain on paper towels.
Once all sprouts are fried,  place in bowl, toss with salt and pepper.
Top hot sprouts with cooled baslamic reduction, breadcrumbs, and drizzle lemon crème fraiche on top.

Balsamic reduction:
1 cup Balsamic vinegar
2 Tablespoons honey
1 Tablspoon sugar

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil, lower to a simmer, and cook until reduced by half. Set aside to cool

Lemon Crème Fraiche: ·    
1 cup crème fraiche
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
Salt to taste  

Combine in a small bowl. Set aside.

Bacon Breadcrumbs: ·     
4 strips of bacon
4 slices of old crusty bread (toast bread so it is really dry)

Cook bacon until really dry and fat is almost all completely drained (use microwave, frying pan, or oven)
Let cool on a paper towel so all fat is drained off
Combine breadcrumbs and bacon in a food processor together and pulverize.
May be used immediately or stored in a covered container in refrigerator for 1 day. All Thanksgiving 2013 Recipes on