Saturday, October 24, 2009

Spaghetti with Brussels Sprouts and Bacon

I really would have like pancetta for this simple dinner, but lately I have been a slave to what's in the fridge . . . "food from nothing" is always one of my kitchen games but for the past week or so the usual pastime hasn't been by choice.
A quick search brought out brussels sprouts, Canadian bacon, a bit of jamon serano, garlic, shallots, parmesan cheese, and about a glass of leftover white wine -- it's starting to look like dinner.
I sauteed the diced bacon in a bit of olive oil just until crisp. I drained the bacon on paper towels and added chopped garlic, shallots, with the cleaned and sliced sprouts (along with a bit more olive oil and S&P, of course) to the hot pan and sautéed until golden. Next I poured in a 1/2 cup or so of white wine and allowed the whole mixture to cook down until the wine was mostly absorbed and the sprouts were tender -- 5-7 minutes, I'd guess -- but I don't like my brussels sprouts too soft. While the wine cooked down I added the spaghetti to boiling water and when it was al dente drained reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid. Just before stirring in the spaghetti I added some chopped jamon serano to the brussels spout mixture along with the reserved bacon. I then added the pasta, a bit of the cooking liquid and plenty of grated parmesan cheese to coat the noodles. Next time -- thinking of adding hazelnuts for a little more crunch or maybe fried sage leaves. But for today it's a quick pantry dinner for an autumn night.

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