Rainy Day Blues

23 Apr

Brussel Sprouts & Pancetta Pizza

It’s rainy and cold in NYC today — guess Mother Nature decided to play a late April Fool’s trick on us. After finishing yoga class, I decided I wanted to hibernate in my apartment and make something comforting for dinner. So I thought today was the perfect day to experiment with making pizza.

I absolutely love the combination of brussel sprouts and bacon, the slight bitterness of the sprouts and saltiness of the bacon go so well together. My friends all know if there are brussel sprouts on the menu, we need to get 2 orders – one for the table and one for me, because I won’t share. And who doesn’t love bacon? I’m actually planning a baconpalooza party soon, so you’ll be hearing more about that later. I decided to get a little fancy today and use pancetta instead of bacon.

I should disclose that I didn’t make the pizza dough. I’m a big believer in making things homemade, but there are certain things that I just don’t have the patience for like pizza dough, dumpling wrappers, and pie shells. I’m sure I will try making my own pizza dough at some point, but I’ll save that for another rainy day.
I can’t believe how ridiculously good this pizza tasted. It was pretty simple to make, most of the time was spent prepping the ingredients. Just add a crisp green salad and some good red wine and you have the perfect rainy day dinner! I’m already dreaming up other pizza ideas, thinking potatoes gratin pizza would make a great hors d’oeuvres at my next cocktail party. One thing’s for sure, I’m never ordering takeout pizza again!


Let’s get started!

Makes enough for 4 servings (or 2 if you’re very hungry)

  • Store bought or homemade pizza dough (I used whole wheat for this pizza)
  • 4 pieces pancetta, chopped (or can use any good thicker-cut bacon)
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella
  • 6-8 large Brussels sprouts, leaves taken apart
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • red pepper flakes
  • salt
  • pepper
  • olive oil to coat baking sheet

Preheat oven to 500 degrees

Cut the ends off the brussel sprouts and separate leaves. This will take the most time, but it’s worth it, I swear. You may want to cut the leaves in half if they’re too big. Then slice the onions and garlic. Chop pancetta into small pieces.

Cook the pancetta in a pan for 4-5 minutes, until they are almost crispy and take out to dry on a paper towel (they will cook more when the pizza bakes). In same pan, toss the brussel sprout leaves with the pancetta drippings. Yeah I went there! This will make the brussel sprouts really crisp up when the pizza bakes.

Generously oil your cookie sheet and press dough down onto the sheet. Stretch the dough out to the edges. The pizza will be irregularly shaped, but that’s part of the fun of homemade pizza.

Now put the toppings on the pizza, starting with the cheese, then add the onions, garlic, brussel sprouts and pancetta. Sprinkle the top with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste. I like things spicy so I add a bit more red pepper flakes.

Put the pizza in the oven to bake for 15-18 minutes until cheese is melted and brussel sprouts have browned.

Now the fun part, slice it up and enjoy!


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