Hello! In the kitchen this week is my niece, Brandy Roades. She sent this to me after making it to say her husband, Tony, had two helpings.

For those of you that don’t know Tony, he is kind of a finicky eater. He will not eat onions and many other things. I am so glad he doesn’t read my column or I would be in trouble, although I did fix him strawberry shortcake on Saturday and he said it was delicious. Putting all jokes aside, he’s a pretty good guy. Right, Brandy? LOL.

I think we need to make this recipe. If Tony says its delicious, it must be, so I am going to make it.

Brandy, you are a great cook. Keep these recipes coming and I will put you in the kitchen with Sharon. Send them to [email protected] or call me at 937-393-3456.

Have a great week.

Creamy Garlic Parmesan

Broccoli and Bacon

This is an unforgettable side dish. Pan fried broccoli and crispy bacon are baked in a cheesy parmesan garlic sauce, topped with bubbling mozzarella cheese.

Ingredients

8 ounces bacon roughly chopped

2 tablespoons butter

1 onion diced

5 cloves garlic finely chopped

1 1/2 cups light cream (or for a richer sauce, you can use heavy or thickened cream)

1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch mixed with one tablespoon of water

1 pound broccoli florets, from two to three broccoli heads, stems removed

Salt and pepper to season

1/2 cup fresh shredded or grated mozzarella cheese

1/3 cup fresh shredded or grated parmesan cheese

Instructions

1. Preheat broiler (on medium heat if you have the option).

2. Fry the bacon in a large over-safe skillet over medium heat until crispy. Use and slotted spoon to transfer to a paper towel-line plate to soak up some of the oil. Set aside.

3. Drain most of the back fat from the pan, leaving about 1-2 tablespoons for added flavor (adjust this amount to your liking). In the same pan, melt the butter, add the onion and cook until transparent (about 2 minutes), while scraping up any browned bits leftover from the bacon. Add the broccoli and season with salt and pepper and cook while stirring occasionally for about three minutes, or until just turning vibrant in color.

4. Add in the garlic and stir it through the broccoli for 30 seconds, until fragrant. Pour in the cream, reduce heat down to low and let simmer for about 3-4 minutes while stirring occassionally, or until the sauce thickens to your liking.

5. Add the bacon and give everything a good mix to combine all the flavors together. Top with the mozzarella and parmesan cheeses. Broil until cheese is bubbling and golden, and broccoli is done to your liking (about 2-3 minutes).

6. Season with a little extra pepper, if desired, before serving. You can also sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley, thyme or rosemary.

Sharon Hughes is the advertising manager at The Times-Gazette. She is also a mother, grandmother and chef.

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