Maple Syrup Flavored Brussells Sprouts


My mom was a great person, and a great cook. What I hated about her, however, is that she believed we needed to eat a little bit of everything on the premises that all food brought various vitamins and nutrients. That is the reason why she served us many vegetables, and other food such as  liver  because it was good for us. For example, liver and spinach were good for iron, oranges for their vitamin B.  etc cetera…

I will tell you that even though she was a fabulous cook, I did not always like her cooking. One of the thing I really disliked as a child in fact was Brussels sprouts. They were bitter, smelled awful , and they were not gentle to my stomach.
It took me many years to cook them when I got married. I cannot remember exactly why I cooked them again. I think my husband liked them (in fact it is one of the very few vegetables he likes and will eat).
My children never liked them, but to follow the tradition, they had to eat them because  eating vegetables is good for you.

However it did not matter how often, or how different I served them. Both my children hated them, making faces with every bite they took.

What happened one day really came as a surprise. Lisa and I were grocery shopping one day, and I picked up a bag of Brussel Sprouts. I surely thought that if she was going to comment on my choice, she was going to scream why I would choose to pick them. But she did not. Instead of a statement of disgust, she actually inquired to see if they were for us, and when I told us that they were not, she gave a sigh, looked pitiful and said: Mom , can you get some for us. Really???? Had I heard right? really ??? I was shocked!!!
All I can say is that you she probably likes them because i am using bacon and maple to flavor them, and I am using my demarle mold to steam them which makes them so much better, and so much tastier!


Ingredients for 4-6 people:

  • a bag of brussel sprouts ( about 12oz)
  • 2 tbsp of bacon bits from costco
  • 2 tbsp of maple syrup
  • salt 
  • pepper
  • 1 tbsp of olive oil
  1. Place the brussels sprouts in the sink filled with water and a tbsp of white vinegar.
  2. Cut the stem of the Brussel sprout, and peel the first and maybe the second leaf of the sprout. Repeat with each sprout.
  3. Cut each Brussel sprout in half, and place them into the round mold.
  4. Add the bacon bits. Place the octogonal silpat on top of the round mold to cover the round mold and place it in the microwave to cook for 5 minutes. Meanwhile turn the oven to 425.image
  5. When the Brussels sprouts are cooked. Pour the maple syrup and the olive oil over the Brussel sprouts and stir.image
  6. Place a large silpat over a large perforated sheet and spread the Brussels sprouts over the silpat.image
  7. Place them into the oven and cook for another 8-10 minutes or until they are getting a golden color.
  8. Enjoy!!! I know my sweet daughter does. I hope that your family and children will enjoy them 🙂image

Bon appetit and happy cooking!!!!

French Green Bean Salad in Maple Dressing

photo 5

Do you have teenage children? I do, I have two. And though I hate that they are grown already and soon ready to leave me, i do enjoy the fact that they are driving on their own. It has truly been a blessing having my daughter drive herself and her brother to school and run errands for me. And run errands, she does… every day. The other day i sent her to get some French green beans for a cooking class and in spite of finding some, she bought some regular green beans, not quite the same taste, or texture. I cooked them the same way I would have my French green beans, but i was not too too satisfied. Any way, we cooked them, we ate them and there were gone.

Because I had another bag in the fridge, i decided to fix a salad with them. Growing up in France, we often had green beans salad with fresh sliced onions. I never was fond of it, that is why I decided that i could use cooked onions instead. I also added maple syrup to my vinaigrette to sweeten the taste of the vinaigrette = Bingo;-) I loved, loved, loved it. I hope that you will give it a try.

photo 3

Ingredients for 4-6:

  • 1 bag of green beans ( about 16 oz.)
  • 2 tbsp of Dijon Mustard ( or other strong mustard)
  • 2 tbsp of champagne vinegar
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 tbsp of maple syrup ( good quality)
  • 1/8 tsp of salt
  • 1/16 tsp of pepper
  • 1-2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 small onion or 1/2 of a large onion to make 1/4 cup of caramelized onions.
  1. Drop 1-2 tbsp of olive oil into a large frying pan and heat it up until it is starting to sizzle. Add the chopped onion and saute it for a few minutes stirring constantly.
  2. Reduce the heat and continue cooking the onions until they are becoming an amber color. It will take at least 8-10 minutes. Sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper, stir and set aside to cool.
  3. Rinse the green beans, trim the ends and place them in the round mold. Place the octogonal silpat  on the large round mold. Place the round mold on the microwave and cook it for 4 minutes.
  4. When the beans are cooked, let them cool. Cut them in 1/2 inch.
  5. In  a large bowl, mix all the ingredients to make the dressing ( oil, olive oil, salt, pepper, maple, mustard). Add the cut beans and the caramelized onions and mix well.

photo 4

You may add 1/4 cup of toasted pecans, 1/4 cup of gorgonzola cheese crumbled, and 1/4 cup of cranberries ( that you would have previously soaked in water for 2 minutes) for extra flavor and for variation. 

photo 1

Well, i have to say that this salad was a winner at my table, even my son and husband went for second. Yeah!!!! And I have enjoyed it so much myself that I have been eating it for dinner and lunch these past 2 days.

I know that i will be serving it for Thanksgiving, easy fast and still yummy;-) I hope that you will give it a try.

Bon Appetit and Happy Cooking!!!

Easy Nut Bars

It is not fun to get old. Everything goes to sh…..That’s not fair!!! I never really had a problem with managing my weight until the magic number of 30 came around. As soon as I hit that number, it seemed that if I looked at a cake, it would go straight to my hips and thighs:- ( and since I am a bit vain as far as appearances,  I had to adapt and change my diet in order to fit in my pants:-). At that time, already 10 years ago,  the Atkins diet was so popular that I chose to completely illuminate all white carbs and most starch from my diet. It worked so I have followed this lifestyle for the past decade. ( Yeah already…)

If at first it was difficult, after a few weeks, it was easy and I have not missed not eating those chips, potatoes or other starch.

In fact, even if I am starving at times, and potato chips or other ” not so good snacks” are around the house, they do not tempt me. I rather snack on nuts, fruits or protein bars. The problem is my sweet tooth. I like to snack on sweet things. Proteins bars have been a great substitute to candy bars. The problem with them is that you have to watch careful for the ingredients as most protein bars contain carbs, and sugars and they are high calorific. They are also very expensive and can taste so unnatural. This weekend as I could not find a protein bars around the house, and did not feel like running to the store,  I decided that I could make my own nut bar. How hard could it be???? After perusing several recipes, and not having any ingredients that they were calling for ( rice syrup, dates, ) I decided to do the following: bind the nuts with almond butter and maple syrup ( what I had on hand).


  • 2 cup of raw blanched almond.
  • 2 cups of pecan,
  • 2 cups of almond,
  • 1/4 cup of almond butter,
  • 1/2 cup of maple syrup,
  • 1/4 turbinado sugar,
  • 2 tbsp of vanilla extract.
  1. Place the nuts on the flexipan that you would have previously placed on a perforated sheet .
  2. Cook them for 10 minutes at 375 to roast them. Stir the nuts a few times during cooking so that all nuts will be roasted on all sides.
  3. When they are roasted and you can start smelling that nutty aroma coming out of your oven, remove the flexipan  from the oven and place the nuts in a food processor to break them. They should be broken in pieces but not milled.
  4. Then in a small saucepan, add the maple sugar, the almond butter and the  turbinado brown sugar and bring to boil.
  5. Add this mixture to the nuts and stir to coat the nuts.
  6. Empty this content back into the flexipan and with a spatula, press hard to make the mixture an even flat bar.
  7. Place the flexipan back into the oven and cook for another 10 minutes at 375. Et voila!!!

8. When the cooking time is up, remove the flexipan from the oven and let it cool.

9. When the nut bars is completely cool, peel the flexipan off the nut bar, and with a sharp knife cut 2x 1 inches nut bar.

10. Place those bars either in a ziploc bar or in an airtight container so that the bars will remain dry.

NB: You can really vary what you put in those bars. Next time i may add dried fruits and maybe chocolate morsels. I will let you know what happens. For now, i am happy with those bars, they taste pretty good, not too sweet and a good snack ( which was all I wanted;-)

Bon Appetit and Happy Cooking!!!