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Tortellini Gets a Smoky Mate with the addition of Cherry wood smoked Brussel Sprouts! This is a medly and yummy recipe for the winter blues

Tortellini Gets a Smoky Mate with the addition of Cherry wood smoked Brussels Sprouts! This is a medley and yummy recipe for the winter blues

 

TORTELLINI GETS A SMOKY MATE

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There is something about the perfect pasta dish that isn’t necessarily loaded with a ton of ingredients.  I’ve found that the perfect pasta often features only 2-3 ingredients in addition to seasonings.  For me, the perfection is in how each of those ingredients contribute to the overall dish.

This is a pasta dish that features the smokiness of Brussels sprouts paired with the citric acid of lemon peel.  Mix in the sweetness of caramelized onion and a full-bodied dish emerges.

A Smoky Start

TBrussell Sprouts on the grill soaking up the flavors of the cherry wood pieces we added to the grill. he simplicity of the ingredients is what makes this such a flavorful and pleasurable dish. Start by smoking about a pound of Brussels sprouts – you can see our previous series on how to smoke these on the gas grill, an extremely easy and quick method.  Then gather 3 tablespoons butter, 1 medium yellow onion that is thinly sliced, 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil or flavored olive oil, 1-1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt, fresh ground pepper, 1 lb. of cheese tortellini, and the zest of 1 lemon.  With the Brussels sprouts already smoked, the cooking time for the rest of the dish is about 20 minutes.

Producing Aromatic Flavors

Put a pot of water on for the tortellini to cook according to the packaged directions.  What keeps this recipe extra simple is you can use frozen tortellini or fresh packaged rather than making your own and it will be just as spectacular a dish as if you made every ingredient yourself. We start with thinly sliced yellow onion in melted butter, releasing the sweetness of the onion.  Once translucent and browning, add the smoked Brussels sprout quarters. Toss together just until the Brussels sprouts heat through.

Cooking the onion in the skillet until they are translucent.

While the onion and Brussels sprouts cook, our water for the tortellini is salted and brought to a boil.  Once at a rolling boil, the pound of cheese tortellini is added.  I’m using a frozen variety but you can certainly use fresh.  Remember, tortellini is a filled pasta that does not take much time to cook to al dente so don’t turn your back on the pot.  It will only be a matter of minutes once the water regains boiling level.  Tortellini has the proven sign of being cooked when they float.  Once cooked, transfer to a large bowl.

 

 Easy Finish

With the tortellini cooked, it’s time to pour the cooked smoky Brussels sprout and onion into the bowl.  Once combined, add the tablespoon of olive oil.  I’m using a Tuscan flavored olive oil for just a bit more refined flavor but plain EVOO will do.  Time to finish this off with fresh ground pepper and salt.  The final ingredient – grated lemon zest.  Zest right over the bowl.  I like a lot of lemon zest so I zest the entire lemon.

After smoking Brussels sprouts using cherry wood, we made a hearty pasta dish that blended the flavors of sweet onion, smoky Brussels sprout, and lemon zest.  Added to cheese tortellini gets a smoky mate, this is so flavorful and easy to make.  Think of the many variations you can give this dish: adding butternut squash, or zucchini cubes, or perhaps chestnut when in season.  Even artichoke hearts.  So many opportunities to put your own fingerprint on this dish.

This recipe is sure to give you a great start on incorporating your favorite ingredients.  We’d love to hear what you think about our blog post “Tortellini Gets a Smoky Mate” so leave us a comment and subscribe to get all our postings on techniques and recipes.  Bringing innovation to wood fired cooking with recipes, techniques and the science behind the fire, that’s SmokinLicious®.

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Related reading:

-STEPPING UP RADISH SALAD WITH A WOOD-FIRED FLARE

-HOW TO TURN YOUR LP/GAS GRILL INTO A SMOKER

Dr Smoke

Dr Smoke- “This is an easy way to bring smoke flavor to a pasta dish.”