What comes to mind when you read ‘Brussels sprouts’? Do you perk up or do you cringe? The first few times I ate them, honestly, I thought they were gross. They were squeaky, water logged mini cabbages with a faintly skunky smell. But then I tried them thinly sliced and sautéed in olive oil with garlic and they were delicious. Later still I ate them roasted with delicata squash and bits of bacon, even better. But now I think I’ve discovered my favorite way to eat them – raw.
Our CSA share last week had tight, brilliant green Brussels sprouts and a little bunch of red and green chard. I immediately thought of a recipe I’d clipped from Bon Appétit last November. It was a kale and Brussels sprout salad. The recipe intrigued me because I don’t typically think of eating either of those vegetables raw.
The key to this salad is fine chopping – you want to cut the chard (or kale) and Brussels sprouts in to tiny ribbons, really more like slaw than salad. The tangy lemon, Dijon vinaigrette clings to every shred and balances the bold flavored greens. Toasted almond chunks and shreds of pecorino cheese make the salad feel indulgent.
Keith commented that he’d choose this over a Caesar salad any-day, and he loves Caesar salad. Maybe you’ll agree.
- 2 teaspoons minced shallot
- 2 teaspoons smooth Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice (preferably fresh)
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 8 ounces Brussels sprouts (about 20), bottom and outer leaves trimmed
- 2 or 3 leaves green or red chard
- 2 ounces shredded pecorino cheese
- 1 ounce toasted, salted almonds, coarsely chopped
- Prepare the dressing in the bottom of your salad serving bowl - it's easier to toss it in to the greens from the bottom. Whisk the shallot, mustard and lemon juice together, then slowly drizzle in the olive oil and whisk until emulsified. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Using a sharp knife, finely chop the Brussels sprouts and chard leaves. Add to the dressing in the bowl and toss to coat. Add about half of the shredded pecorino and toss again.
- Top with remaining pecorino and almonds; serve.
- Serves 4 as a side dish or 2 really hungry people (yep, we ate the whole thing)