Steve's sautéed brussels sprouts
Steve Bontadelli, Santa Cruz County farmer
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12 to 16 oz. brussels sprouts (halved if much larger than 1-inch diameter)
1/2 cup water
4 tbsp. olive oil
5 cloves garlic, chopped
2 oz. pancetta or bacon, diced (optional)
Splash of balsamic vinegar or red wine
Trim and wash brussels sprouts. Place in a large, covered pot with boiling water to steam. (Use a steam basket if possible to avoid placing sprouts directly in boiling water.) Steam for 3 to 4 minutes or until you are barely able to pierce with a fork. Do not overcook. Remove sprouts from pot and drain well.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet; add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add sprouts and, if desired, pancetta or bacon, stirring to distribute oil over sprouts. Sauté another 4 to 6 minutes, stirring constantly until sprouts are nicely browned on the outside. (Be careful not to burn them as they will become bitter.) Add a splash of balsamic vinegar or red wine just before removing from the stove. Serve warm.