Brussels sprouts are one of my favourite fall vegetables. Amazingly enough I only had them for the first time a couple of years ago. I had always assumed I wouldn’t like them, but boy was I wrong. Our family was completely smitten after our first bite. After that I made a pact with myself to start picking up new and different (to me) fruits and vegetables when I took notice of them, even if I had no idea what to do with them. That’s what Google’s for isn’t it?
We usually have Brussels sprouts as a side. We like them steamed in a bit of chicken broth and white wine with a pat of butter. But, it was high time they got to star in a main dish. I knew Brussels sprouts and bacon were a natural pairing, all they needed was a backdrop. In this dish fettuccine noodles are tossed with caramelized Brussels sprouts, crisp bacon and a light cream sauce. It’s very simple and the two star ingredients really get to shine. I like to go a little heavy on the pepper in the final seasoning because it compliments the flavours nicely. This has now become our go-to fall pasta.
I’d love to know – is there a fruit or vegetable that you pass by even though you know you ought to give it a try?
- ½ pound whole wheat or brown rice fettuccine
- 6 slices bacon, chopped
- 1 lb. Brussels sprouts, trimmed (outer leaves removed) and thinly sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ⅓ cup spreadable cream cheese
- ¾ cup chicken broth
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserving ½ cup pasta water before draining.
- Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet, set over medium-high heat, until crisp. Remove bacon bits and let drain on paper towel. Pour off some of the bacon grease until approximately 2 tablespoons remain in the skillet. Add Brussels sprouts to skillet. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until Brussels sprouts are tender and starting to brown. Add garlic. Cook for 30 seconds, just until fragrant. Lower heat and stir in cream cheese and chicken broth. Stir until cream cheese is melted and sauce is smooth. Stir in drained pasta until well coated. Add a bit of pasta water, if needed, until you get a loose sauce covering the pasta. Season liberally with salt and pepper, to taste. Stir in bacon just before serving.