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Pan Seared Brussels Sprouts with Lemon and Pancetta


Pan seared Brussels sprouts with lemon and pancetta

Check your local farmer’s markets — Brussels sprouts are harvested in the United States from June through January.  And when paired with bright lemon and salty bits of pancetta, they fill that need for an earthy fall side dish without being heavy or overpowering. Steaming the Brussels sprouts in the same pan before sauteeing ensures they’ll be mildly sweet, toothy and tender with a concentrated caramelized crust.

Pan Seared Brussels Sprouts with Lemon and Pancetta
Servings: 4
Cooking Technique: Blanching, Pan Searing and Sautéing

2 cups water
1 lb. Brussels sprouts, stems trimmed and heads cut in half from top to stem
1/2 cup chopped pancetta
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
Zest of two lemons
Salt to taste

Heat a large frying pan on high heat. Add water and a pinch of salt. Add Brussels sprouts and bring the water to a boil. Drain the Brussels sprouts after 5 minutes of cooking and set aside.

Return the pan to medium heat and dry any water left in the pan with a clean paper towel. Add pancetta to the pan and render until just crispy. Add olive oil and Brussels sprouts to the pan. Adjust the heat as needed to caramelize the Brussels sprouts without burning.

When the Brussels sprouts are caramelized and tender, add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds, being careful not to burn the garlic. Turn off the heat and add salt to taste. Add lemon zest and toss.

Chef’s Notes:
This technique works great with root vegetables and green beans, too. Cut vegetables into equal size pieces to ensure even cooking.


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