Sunday, November 28, 2010

Brussel Sprouts with Pancetta and Chestnuts

This past Thanksgiving dinner I finally convinced my mom to let me cook something a little different than our normal menu.  I had made roasted Brussel Sprouts a few weeks earlier and loved how they developed a nutty flavor.  Given that it is Thanksgiving, I upped the ante and added some pancetta and cooked chestnuts.  They were by far, my favorite side dish from our Thanksgiving dinner.

Brussel Sprouts:

2-3 ounces of cubed pancetta (TJ's has it)
12-15 brussel sprouts, halved and cleaned
2 tbsp olive oil - I used duck fat because it was tasty, but bacon fat works too
Salt and Pepper
1/4 tsp. of chili powder
1/2 cup of pealed chopped cooked chestnuts

Preheat oven to 350F.  In a large skillet brown the pancetta on medium heat.  Once crispy, take out with a slotted spoon and drain onto paper towels.  Add a bit more oil/fat to the pan on medium high heat.  Add the sprouts, halved side down, season with salt, pepper and chili powder and let cook for 5-7 minutes, until they get a nice color of golden brown.  Stir around a bit, add the chestnuts and a splash of water or chicken stock.  Put the pan in the oven and cook the brussel sprouts till soft but still have a bite to them.  Depending on the size 8-12 minutes.  Once done, sprinkle with the crispy pancetta and serve.

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