Brussels sprouts with pancetta and lemon

This side dish is healthy (green vegetables) yet filling and decadent (pancetta). It can be made for thanksgiving, or as an accompaniment to any meat dish.

serves: 4        difficulty: easy      prep time: 30 min


  • 2 lbs Brussels sprouts
  • 2 medim shallots
  • 2 tsb olive oil
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 6 oz pancetta
  • zest and juice of one lemon



Wash the Brussels sprouts, and clean them by removing the outer leaves. Slice the larger ones in two, and keep the small one whole.

Dice the shallots.


Heat a sauté pan, and add the olive oil. When the oil shimmers, add the shallots and sauté until they start turning gold.


Add the Brussels sprouts and continue sautéing for 5 min. The sprouts will turn a brighter green color and will start caramelizing.  Season with 1 tsp salt and black pepper to taste.

Add the stock and cover the pan with a lid. Cook until the stock evaporates. At this point the Brussel sprouts have to be a tad firmer than how you like to eat them. If they feel very firm, add more stock or water, and continue cooking covered with a lid.

In the meantime render the pancetta. Cut off and discard the parts of the pancetta that are pure fat, and slice the meaty part into 1/8 inch cubes.

Heat a fry pan (no oil needed) and add the pancetta cubes. Reduce the heat to medium – low, and render the pancetta slowly.  Continue cooking until the pancetta slices are golden. That can take 15-20 min.

Remove from the pan, and place the rendered pancetta on napkins or paper towels to drain the excess fat.

Turn on the broiler of your oven, and place the sauté pan under the broiler. Broiling the sprouts will give them crunch. Keep under the broiler for 1 min, take them out carefully (watch out for that hot pan handle) and stir. Repeat 3-4 times over 3-4 min until the sprouts are nicely browned on all sides. Don’t be afraid if some leaves are burnt.


Add the pancetta, lemon zest and lemon juice, and mix well.



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