I know how easy it is to lose a home, a city, a country.

What’s that?  Oh, you are here to hear about Brussels sprouts and chestnuts?  You had no intention of walking into some dark navel-gazing introspectiveness?  Tough luck, my friend.  It’s Thanksgiving–my favorite holiday for many reasons, and god-free to boot!–and I’m about to give thanks first.  So, where were we?

I know how easy it is to lose a home, a city, a country.  I know how hard it is to start from scratch.  Yet here I somehow am, in this magical second chance at life that contains:

  • a cast of funny, kind, brilliant people–all healthy!
  • a second hometown that hugs me with the ferocity of a friendly bear;
  • a job that not only pays the bills but tickles my brain on a daily basis, still, all these many years later;
  • a guarantee that I will never, ever run out of books;
  • a home, in which there’s a kitchen, in which there’s joy.

The word “thankful” does not begin to scratch the surface of what I feel.

Ok, now we can get back to business.  Here’s the latest lick of that kitchen joy:

Roasted brussels sprouts with chestnuts

  • 1 lb Brussels sprouts
  • ~2 large fistfuls of roasted, peeled chestnuts (you can roast them yourself… or, if you’re like us, you can pick up a jar at Whole Foods if you don’t want to risk repeating the exploding-chestnuts-in-oven episode, the aftermath of which resembled the brain detail scene from Pulp Fiction)
  • a generous glug of olive oil, and a couple of splashes of balsamic vinegar and soy sauce
  1. Cut the sprouts into quarters and put them into an oiled baking dish.  Coat them with olive oil, vinegar, soy sauce.
  2. Roast on 400F for ~10 minutes.  Then, add chestnuts and toss to combine.
  3. Back into the oven it goes for another ~10-15 minutes.  It will be done when you decide the sprouts are tender enough.  And believe me, they will be delicious enough.