Could this brussel sprout salad BE any more fall?
Fall is my favorite season to cook during because I love all the seasonal ingredients, flavors, and colors! One seasonal ingredient that love, yet disliked growing up, is brussel sprouts. As a child it is basically embedded in our brains that brussel sprouts are gross so I never even thought to try them. It wasn’t until my mid-20s when someone cooked them for me, and cooked them well, that I was hooked!
They key with brussel sprouts is to not overcook them which I find happens a lot if I try to steam them. If overcooked, the sprouts will release an organic compound containing sulfur which will emit a nasty order. And who wants to eat something that smells bad? I don’t blame people who say they dislike brussel sprouts if their only experience with them is trying them overcooked.
My go-to brussel sprout recipe is caramelizing them in a pan over high heat with lemon. I also enjoy roasting them with balsamic and honey. These ways of cooking the sprouts help you to avoid over-cooking them and releasing that horrible sulfurous odour. Or make this salad and go the super easy route of not having to cook them at all!
What’s all the hype about?
Brussel sprouts are considered a cruciferous vegetable – right up there with broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and kale. They are high in vitamin C and K, fiber, folate, and antioxidants and there has been a lot of research and articles written about the sprouts cancer fighting potential.
So if you haven’t given brussel sprouts a chance or have had a bad experience with stinky overcooked sprouts I urge you to give them another shot!
- [b]For the Salad[/b]
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted
- 12oz brussels sprouts
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup gorgonzola cheese crumbles
- 1 pear, chopped into small cubes
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 jumbo shallots, thinly sliced into rings
- [b]For the Maple Vinaigrette[/b]
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup (not pancake syrup)
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- Salt and pepper
- Heat a pan over a medium-low heat and toast the chopped pecans until golden brown and fragrant. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Holding the bottom core of the sprout, thinly slice into ribbons and place in a large serving bowl. Discard the cores.
- Add the dried cranberries, toasted pecans, gorgonzola cheese, and pears.
- Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the shallots then fry until light golden brown, approx 1-2 minutes.
- Scoop the shallot onto a paper towel-lined plate to drain and sprinkle with salt then repeat with remaining shallots.
- Add fried shallots to the rest of the salad. Toss to combine.[br][br]
- Combine the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, pure maple syrup, Dijon mustard, salt and pepper together in a jar and shake to combine.
- Pour the dressing over salad then toss to coat and serve immediately.