Sunday, January 16, 2011

Tagliatelle with Brussels Sprouts, Walnuts and Gorgonzola

Pasta with brussels sprouts, walnuts and blue cheese

This is not the pasta I ate tonight. Today I practiced making tortellini for my upcoming midterm and made a big batch of marinara. But what if, say, you're watching your team fumble themselves out of the playoffs and you just don't have time for homemade pasta? Or you have a bunch of brussels sprouts and you're sick of roasting them? Then this is the pasta for you, my friends.

This is not a subtle dish to be sure. Brussels sprouts can be bitter if overcooked so make sure you don't cover the pan when they're cooking, and don't stir too often! You want to make sure they get some nice golden brown bits on them. Gorgonzola is a good strong blue, but I think cambozola (a triple cream blue) would be a nice choice here as well.

Tagliatelle with Brussels Sprouts, Walnuts and Gorgonzola
serves 2-4

1 1/2 lbs brussels sprouts, trimmed and roughly chopped
1 onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (or more)
2 ounces (ish) gorgonzola or other blue cheese
tagliatelle or fettucine
olive oil
salt and pepper

Heat the olive oil over medium heat in large skillet. Saute the onion until translucent, then add the chopped brussels sprouts. Cook over medium heat until the sprouts are tender and starting to turn golden. Season with salt and pepper to taste (be generous, you're about to add a bunch of pasta).  Toast the walnuts in a dry skillet or a 350 degree oven (I use the toaster oven) for a few minutes until they smell extra nutty. Be careful not to leave toasting nuts unattended, they go from toasted to burnt in an instant.

Meanwhile bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta. Cook the pasta until al dente; note that if you're using fresh pasta this will only take a couple of minutes, otherwise the timing will depend on the type of dry pasta you choose. If you forget to start the pasta until the sprouts are ready, just turn down the heat on the sprouts and let them hang out over a super low flame for a while, it'll be ok.

When the pasta is al dente and the brussels sprouts are done to your liking, use tongs to transfer the pasta from the cooking water into the saute pan. A little water clinging to the noodles is a good thing, it'll keep everything moist. Add the toasted walnuts and toss the pasta and sprouts together long enough to heat the sprouts back up if they've been resting. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary (mine needed more salt and pepper). Dish the pasta out into serving bowls and top with blue cheese and a little drizzle of olive oil.


  1. I seriously dig this dish, and coincidentally I just picked up a bag of brussels sprouts yesterday afternoon at Trder Joe's -- it's like you read my mind!

  2. Osvaldo. (Argentina)January 26, 2011 at 2:01 AM

    No se relaciona con lo que escribiste, pero tengo que decirlo.
    Sos muy linda. :D

  3. I will be trying this for dinner tonight!

  4. I have the worst brussels sprout craving today, and Whole Foods was all out. It was too late to check elsewhere, so I'm just going to live vicariously through your recipe. When I do get my hands on some brussels sprouts, I'd love to try something like this. Roasting does get old after a while.

  5. Oh my, does this ever sound delicious!