This dish almost turned out vegetarian; until I added bacon and cooked the brussel sprouts in bacon fat. If you are really not feeling the pork, omit it. However, I implore you to keep it. It adds saltiness, crunch, and texture that the dish will miss without it.
With the exception of boiling the pasta separately, all other preparation is conducted in one pot making this dish an approachable mid- week go-to. The bacon cooks first and everything else follows, picking up little bacon bits along the way.
Brussel sprouts are sturdy and can withstand the heat when you warm them the next day for lunch. Sun dried tomatoes capture the essence of juicy ripe tomatoes. They are the raisins of tomatoes. It adds depth to your dinner with no additional effort on your behalf. Lastly, the bright lemon cream sauce loosely coats the pasta and blends the salty bacon, rich tomatoes, and hearty Brussel sprouts together.
- ½ lb fettuccine or pasta of choice (typically ½ a box)
- 5 strips of thick sliced bacon
- 8-10 Brussel sprouts, halved
- ½ cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes
- 1 cup heavy cream
- juice of one lemon
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon butter
- ½ cup reserved pasta water
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 shallot, minced
- salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
- Bring a large pot of water to boil and prepare pasta al dente.
- Add the tomatoes to the reserved pasta water to rehydrate. Once softened, chop into bit sized pieces.
- In a large skillet, fry bacon on medium high heat till crispy and set aside on a lined plate with paper towels to drain. When cooled, crumble the bacon.
- Leave remaining bacon fat in the skillet and add the brussel sprouts flat side down.
- Allow the sprouts to slightly brown for 6 to 7 minutes and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- When sprouts are cooked remove from the skillet and set aside.
- Add the butter, shallots, and garlic and saute for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add the heavy cream and lemon zest to the skillet and bring to a low simmer for 10 minutes.
- When the cream thickens, add the lemon juice, tomatoes, brussel sprouts, and bacon. Stir and simmer for 3 minutes. Add some of the reserved pasta water from the tomatoes to loosen the sauce if it becomes too thick.
- Add the pasta to the skillet and toss in the sauce.