Brussels sprouts are one of those vegetables that people love to hate. I used to hate them. Then I married a Brussels sprouts lover.
Unfortunately, my husband first introduced me to frozen Brussels sprouts that were simply steamed and served with butter and salt. Those soggy, bitter sprouts didn’t do anything for me (I still don’t like them that way). Then I began to experiment with different recipes, and I slowly began to appreciate them. One of the first recipes that helped me begin warming up to Brussels sprouts is a sauteed sprout recipe that my Mom makes.
But the dish that turned me from a Brussels sprouts “tolerater” to a Brussels sprouts lover is Pasta with Brussels Sprouts and Pine Nuts. The sprouts are sliced thin and sauteed in butter and olive oil, and the pine nuts really bring out the nutty flavor. This has become one of our favorite dishes.
I have since branched out and truly enjoy other sprout recipes. I can now say that I love Brussels sprouts, with one caveat: they must be cooked properly.
This recipe is adapted from the November 2007 issue of Gourmet.
Pasta with Brussels Sprouts and Pine Nuts
- 3/4 pound Brussels sprouts
- 1/2 pound spaghetti or other long pasta
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons pine nuts
- Salt and pepper
- Grated Parmesan cheese for serving
Trim the Brussels sprouts. Slice them in a food processor fitted with a slicing disk. They can also be thinly sliced with a knife.
Cook pasta in salted water until al dente.
Meanwhile, heat the butter and olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. When the butter is melted, cook the pine nuts, stirring them until golden, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the Brussels sprouts, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and freshly ground pepper. Saute until tender and lightly browned, about 4 minutes.
Reserve 1/2 cup pasta-cooking water. Drain the pasta and then add it to the skillet, tossing to mix it all together. Add some of the reserved water to moisten if necessary. Adjust seasonings and serve with grated Parmesan.
Serves 3 – 4