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Pasta with Brussels Sprouts, Lemon and Almonds
Preserved lemon rind and Brussels sprouts were made for each other. It is easy to make your own preserved lemons, or you can purchase them at the Aspens Market in the deli.
- 1 pound sturdy pasta, such as fettucini, linguini, or spaghetti
- 3/4 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed of outer leaves, and thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 2 slices of bacon, finely chopped (or pancetta, or prosciutto, or guanciale)
- rind from 1/2 of a preserved lemon, rinsed and sliced into slivers, or the zest of one lemon plus its juice
- 1/2 cup whole, unsalted almonds, toasted and chopped (or pine nuts, or pecans, or homemade croutons)
- salt and pepper to taste (white pepper would be good)
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan (or other hard cheese)
- Put a large pot of water on to boil.
- Heat a large frying pan, and add the butter and the olive oil. When the butter is bubbling, add the bacon and the shallot, and cook until the shallot is starting to brown.
- Add the slivered preserved lemon and the Brussels sprouts, and quickly "stir-fry" over high heat until the sprouts get nice and brown. Now turn down the heat a bit (add the lemon zest and lemon juice at this point, if using) and simmer for about 5 minutes.
- When the pasta water boils, add a generous pinch of salt (I'll add a tablespoon to a large pot), and cook the pasta until al dente.
- Before you drain the pasta, dip a one cup measure into the pasta water and set aside. You'll use this to thicken the sauce.
- Add the drained pasta back to the pot, and then add the Brussels sprouts and all the juices from the frying pan. Toss, toss, toss, and cook over low heat for a minute, adding pasta water little by little to thicken the sauce.
- Top with the chopped almonds, the Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper.
- Toss, toss, toss, and serve.