Balsamic Glazed Brussels Sprouts

This week over at the cooking club our assignment this week is “Autumn Hues” and finally the fall fruits and vegetables are piled high just waiting to jump into the grocery carts, of course, the variety of squash is always a good choice, but I spied the bin of Brussels sprouts that probably get a bad rap most of the time and recalled favorite recipes that I’ve made over the years then shaved the list to focus on my all time favorite, pan or oven roasted with a balsamic glaze.

As I started to inspect the bin the produce lady just plopped an entire stalk of sprouts next to me and of course, I couldn’t resist, what a prize!   I got some funny looks on the way to the checkout and the poor clerk didn’t know the price, called another over and then after a brief discussion they settled on how to charge me not realizing that I didn’t care and I never even checked the receipt.  I ran into a neighbor while shopping and she had the funniest look on her face as I wheeled my prize out the door, her comment “I won’t be over for dinner tonight” got a few laughs and I am sure that she wondered just what the heck I was going to do with that odd thing and she, of course, is not fond of veggies for the most part so any recipe sharing would have been wasted…

For lack of space in the refrigerator, I plucked each and every sprout from the stalk (about 2 pounds) saving some for dinner to go with our mushroom/beef Bourguignon.

Mike’s mind ran head on to the thought of gooey cheese sauce to pour over them after they had been steamed or at least that is what he thought would happen, not, pan or oven roasted is the way to go and adorned with  cubes of crispy pancetta and a nice smooth balsamic glaze is what I had in mind and inspired by Ina’s recipe slightly adapted that is exactly the route that I took.

In the past, I have made Fine Cooking’s version (issue #74)  and after looking around decided that there wasn’t much of a difference in anyone’s version with the exception for oven or stove-top pan roasting methods.

Ina’s Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts slightly adapted…

1½ pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half through the core
4 ounces pancetta, sliced ¼ inch thick, crisped up and then reserved to top off the sprouts
1/4 cup good olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon syrupy balsamic vinegar
*optional grated parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Place the Brussels sprouts on a sheet pan, including some of the loose leaves, which get crispy when they’re roasted. Cut the pancetta into ½-inch dice and add to the pan. Add the olive oil, 1½ teaspoons salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper and toss with your hands. Spread out the mixture in a single layer.

Roast the Brussels sprouts for 20 to 30 minutes, until they’re tender and nicely browned and the pancetta is cooked. Toss once during roasting. Remove from the oven, drizzle immediately with the balsamic vinegar, and toss again. Taste for seasonings and serve hot.

*Alternately, follow the FC link:

Heat a large skillet and add 1 tablespoon EVOO and 2 ounces of cubed pancetta and cook until golden and crispy.  Remove crispy pancetta to paper towels.  Leave the fat in the pan and add more oil to equal 2 tablespoons. Have ready about 1/2 cup water or chicken broth.  Add the sprout halves cut side down, cook over medium-high to medium heat for about 4 minutes until nicely browned, pour in the water or broth and cover.  Cook until tender adding a bit more water if necessary.

Remove sprouts to a warm serving bowl, heat the balsamic vinegar (1/4 cup) in the roasting pan, heat and reduce to 2 tablespoons, toss in butter, whisk until melted, pour over the sprouts, top with crispy pancetta and a sprinkle of cheese.

http://www.finecooking.com/recipe/balsamic-glazed-brussels-sprouts-with-pancetta

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/balsamic-roasted-brussels-sprouts-recipe-1996813

Print this recipeIna’s Balsamic Glazed Brussells Sprouts