Tastes of the Old Country Here

Brussels Sprouts and Pancetta

While they may not be a traditional Thanksgiving dish, Brussels sprouts are popping up on restaurant menus across the country.  They have faded out of the hipster foodie scene but they are too delicious for me to let go.  Introduced them to my family’s table last Thanksgiving and hoping to make them a staple.

Brussels sprouts

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

1 lbs. of Brussels sprouts
3 cups chicken stock
½ large onion sliced thin
2-3 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons of olive oil
½ lbs. of pancetta diced
1 tablespoon butter.
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon truffle oil (optional)
Serves 5-7
  1. Preheat oven to 400°.  Halve the Brussels sprouts. Quarter larger sprouts. You ideally want the sprouts roughly the same size.   Bring chicken stock to a simmer and add sprouts. Cover and let simmer for about 5-10 min.  Sprouts should just start to get soft, not mushy but not super firm. You should be able to get a fork through them, with some resistance/firmness.  Save stock for deglazing.
  2. Line a baking sheet with tin foil.  Thinly slice half an onion.  Peel garlic cloves. Add onions, whole garlic cloves and Brussels sprouts to baking sheet.  Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and lightly toss.
  3. Bake for 20 minutes. Light toss. Bake for additional 10-20 min until golden brown.
  4. In a frying pan, melt butter over medium heat.  Add chopped pancetta and brown.  Drain grease from the pan (maybe leave a little J, a tablespoon or so).   Add roasted Brussels sprouts, onions and garlic to the frying pan with the pancetta.  On low heat, add a splash of chicken stock to deglaze the pan. Scrape the bottom with a wooden spoon, getting all that brown deliciousness on the bottom and toss.
  5. Salt and pepper to taste. NB: Pancetta and chicken stock offer up a fair amount of saltiness and sodium. Optional to sprinkle with truffle oil. Serve hot.

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