I have a hunch that lots of folks made Brussels sprouts last week for Thanksgiving Day dinner — and that lots of folks also didn’t eat them then.
You might even have some still around in some nook in the frig, yes?
With this recipe, you well may wish to add Brussels sprouts to those in-demand day-after leftovers such as turkey breast meat and homemade cranberry sauce.
Especially if they’ve been roasted or sautéed (as distinct from steamed or boiled into an Army fatigue green), Brussels sprouts add buckets of flavor and texture to those meals that we can “redecorate,” foods like hash, pasta, gratin, vegetable soup, colcannon (an Irish preparation of mashed potatoes and cabbage) or bubble and squeak (a British version of the same, pan fried).
Brussels sprouts are wee cabbages, after all, so crunch and much flavor are native to them. They’re perfect for leftover use because those elements stick around for a second or third turn.
Today’s recipe combines cut-up cooked leftover Brussels sprouts and an ample amount of lemon zest zing. It’s a terrifically delicious dish, almost as tasty as the feast where the sprouts first appeared.
Lemony Brussels Sprouts and Breadcrumb Spaghetti
Serves 4-6, thekitchn.com
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 1/2 cups coarse fresh breadcrumbs (from about 4 ounces crusty bread)
- 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided, plus more as needed
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Finely grated zest of 2 medium lemons, divided
- 1 pound dry spaghetti
- 3 cups cooked or roasted Brussels sprouts, coarsely chopped if in large pieces
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, plus more as needed
- Grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, toast the breadcrumbs. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large nonstick frying pan over medium heat until shimmering. Add the breadcrumbs and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, and season with pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until golden-brown and toasted, about 7 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in half of the lemon zest. Transfer the breadcrumbs to a medium bowl and set aside. Wipe out the pan with paper towels if needed.
Add the spaghetti to the boiling water and cook according to package directions until al dente. Meanwhile, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in the frying pan over medium heat until shimmering. Add the Brussels sprouts, garlic, and red pepper flakes, if using, and cook until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the wine, remaining 1 teaspoon salt, and season with pepper. Cook until the wine is reduced by about half, about 2 minutes. If the pasta is not ready yet, remove the sprouts pan from the heat.
When the pasta is ready, return the frying pan to medium heat. Using tongs, transfer the pasta directly from the cooking water to the pan. Add the 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 1 cup of the pasta cooking water and cook, tossing constantly, until the sauce thickens and coats the pasta. Add more pasta water a tablespoon at a time as needed if the pasta is dry.
Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the remaining lemon zest. Taste and season with more salt, pepper, and lemon juice as needed. Sprinkle with the toasted breadcrumbs and Parmesan cheese and serve immediately.
Reach Bill St John at [email protected]