While we're not quite sure who came up with the genius idea of pairing brussels sprouts with bacon, we'd like to thank them for not only creating a cool-weather side dish that is pretty much perfect, but also saving rescuing the sprouts from a life of stigma. Now that we've got the thank yous out of the way, let's talk about how to improve on this already awesome combo. If you ask the guys at Stone Brewing Co., their answer to improving pretty much anything is adding beer, and really, who are we to argue?
These Stone Pale Ale and Garlic Stir-Fried Brussels Sprouts adapted from The Craft of Stone Brewing Co. take that basic charred sprouts and crisp-chewy bacon combo (or pancetta in this case) and finish them off with a bottle of Stone Pale Ale, which in turn cooks down and glazes the spouts with a sticky coating with notes of crisp hops and subtle citrus making for an even more nuanced side of sprouts.
Reprinted with permission from The Craft of Stone Brewing Co. by Greg Koch and Steve Wagner with Randy Clemens. Copyright © 2011. Published by Ten Speed Press. Available wherever books are sold. All rights reserved.
- Yield:2 as a main course, or 4 as a side dish
- Active time: 20 minutes
- Total time:20 minutes
- 1 pound brussels sprouts (about 4 cups)
- 1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
- 1/4 pound pancetta, diced
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 cups (12 fluid ounces) Stone Pale Ale
- 1/4 cup vegetable stock
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Finely diced tomato, for garnish
- Shaved or grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for garnish
Set up a steamer with 1 to 2 inches of salted water and bring the water to a rolling boil. Put the brussels sprouts in the steamer, cover, and cook until slightly tender, about 4 minutes. Drain and immediately transfer the brussels sprouts to a large bowl of ice water to halt the cooking and preserve their bright green color. Let them cool in the ice water for about 1 minute, then drain. Lay them on a clean dish towel and pat dry. Cut them in half vertically, right through the core.
In a large wok or cast-iron skillet, heat the oil over high heat until it begins to shimmer. Turn the heat down to medium. Add the pancetta and cook, stirring occasionally, until it begins to brown. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Turn the heat up to high, add the brussels sprouts, and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, 4 to 5 minutes.
Add the beer and continue to cook over high heat until the liquid is mostly evaporated. Deglaze the pan by adding the vegetable stock, stirring and scraping up any browned bits that may be affixed to the pan.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with the tomato and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Serve immediately.