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Its not every day that I make something and think its too good to eat all at once. BR and I were cleaning the apartment ferociously when I found a stack of magazines completely untouched! No tabs. No markings. It was like Christmas!

When the cleaning was done, I sat on the couch with my post-it tabs turning page after page and using dozens of tabs. And in the last untouched issue in my hand, I saw it. This recipe in the back of the magazine. The photo drew me in.

Brussel sprouts.

cavatapi pasta


Looked like a fantastic side. Even better? I had everything on hand to make it happen. So, I walked into my just cleaned kitchen and proceeded to make a mess. (Not to worry, I cleaned it up again!)


I found this recipe online, but its from the November 2012 issue of Cooking Light Magazine.

  • 8 ounces uncooked cavatappi pasta (reserve 2/3 cup pasta water)
  • 2 teaspoons unsalted butter (an additional Tbsp for the brussel sprouts
  • 1/4 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) Italian style seasoned Breadcrumbs
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil  (I used butter instead)
  • 12 ounces Brussels sprouts, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup thinly sliced onion
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2/3 cup organic vegetable broth Pasta Water
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 ounces pecorino Romano cheese, shaved (about 1/2 cup) Grated Parmesan Cheese 
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain and transfer to a large bowl; keep warm.
  2. Melt butter in a small skillet over medium heat; swirl to coat. Add panko breadcrumbs to pan; cook 3 minutes or until browned, stirring frequently.
  3. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil unsalted Butter to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion and garlic; cook 3 minutes or until onion is tender and the Brussels sprouts are lightly browned. Add Brussels sprouts to pan; cook 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add broth pasta water and next 5 ingredients salt and pepper (through pepper). Cover and Stir fry and cook 5 –7 minutes or until Brussels sprouts are crisp-tender. Add Brussels sprouts mixture to pasta; toss well. Sprinkle with cheese, pine nuts, and panko Breadcrumbs. Serve immediately.


With the tweaks that I made this was a homerun! The pasta had the perfect bite. The seasoned breadcrumbs toasted in butter provided a nuttiness to this and the great garlic flavor made this a dish to savor.


Due to the lack of any meat, BR gave me the green light to enjoy this baby all on my own. But it was so good, I wanted it to last!

I love how true to the picture the dish looked, the simplicity of putting it together and the surprising burst of flavor with such simple ingredients. So looking forward to Fall with the abundance of brussel sprouts- this would make a great addition to the Thanksgiving spread.