Have you ever started a new venture, one where you’re not quite sure where the road will take you, but for some inexplicable reason you can’t resist the path? Maybe you were unhappy or bored or just wanted something different in your day-to-day life. Whatever the reason, you decided to make a change. To challenge yourself. To turn over a new leaf, so to speak.
That’s kind of what this blog has been all about for me. In the last several months, I’ve been practically itching for a creative culinary outlet that I could share with the world. I wanted to cut back on the analytic side of my self and allow myself to embrace the more creative. I had no idea what shape it would take, how it would feel, or where the path would lead, but in an effort to live a more fulfilling and rewarding life, I decided to go for it. And I have to say, the outcome has been extraordinary. Not only have I enjoyed every single second of this journey thus far, but I’ve also been completely overwhelmed by the outpouring of love, encouragement and support from the online community. I couldn’t feel more certain that this decision, while a bit terrifying in the beginning, was the best thing I could have done for myself.
So thanks, beautiful readers, for your support and love of my newfound creative self. I hope that you, too, can turn over a new leaf in your health, your relationships, your career, your perspective on life, or whatever it is that you feel is due for a change.
And since all of us have to start somewhere, and eat something for dinner, feel free to begin by peeling (and turning) these charred Brussels sprout leaves tonight. Combine them with fresh tagliatelle, crispy prosciutto, and a creamy egg sauce, top with freshly grated truffles, and look forward to the outcome. I’m sure it, too, will be extraordinary.
PS: If you have any doubts about just how extraordinary, use Bourré’s drool stream as a clue. This only happens when something in the kitchen smells really, seriously delicious.
Pasta Carbonara with Charred Brussels Sprout Leaves and Truffles
Serves: 2 as a main, 4 as a side
- ¾ lb of Brussels sprouts
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 8 oz of fresh or store-bought tagliatelle
- 4 oz of prosciutto (or another cured meat, like bacon), chopped finely
- truffle oil/salt/shaved
- coarsely ground pepper ½ teaspoon
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- parm reg – 1/3 c
- 2 egg yolks
- lemon rind, for garnish (optional)
- fresh ground pepper, for garnish
- truffle salt or freshly grated truffle, for garnish
Begin by trimming the Brussels sprouts and peeling the outer leaves off of them. I found that the easies way to do this is to chop the choke from the bottom and then peel from the bottom up. Toss the sprouts and prosciutto with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and pepper to coat, place on a baking sheet at bake at 400 for 15-20 minutes, or until crispy and slightly blackened on the edges, stirring them once halfway through. Remove from oven and set aside.
Cook the pasta in boiling water. I used homemade tagliatelle that I keep handy in my freezer, but store bought would also work. Drain, coat with olive oil (or truffle oil!), and reserve at least 2 cups of the remaining water for later use.
Add butter to the skillet and cook over medium heat until golden brown. Add ½ cup of pasta liquid to the skillet and swirl.
Add pasta and cheese to the skillet and toss. Remove from heat, add in egg yolks, tossing well. Add Brussels sprout leaves and prosciutto, toss, and add more pasta liquid if the sauce is not thin enough. It should be very creamy, but not watery.
Plate and top each plate with freshly grated parmesan cheese, cracked pepper, a pinch of lemon rind, and freshly grated truffle (if you have one) or a sprinkle truffle salt.
Adapted from Bon Appetit
I use fresh tagliatelle that I keep stored in my freezer.
For a vegetarian version, simply omit the prosciutto.