Brussels Sprouts are round spheres that resemble baby cabbages and are often roasted or sauteed in a hot pan. The flavors are slightly bitter, but when cooked or shaved thinly, become sweet and tender. Brussels Sprouts are great in salads instead of lettuce, or accompanied with other winter greens because of their unique taste and texture – they are just a bowlful of fun.
You can buy Brussels Sprouts on the stalks or loose in bags at the grocery store or farmers markets. I have grown Brussels Sprouts a few times in my yard and I wasn’t quite sure how to harvest them? Do I cut they whole stalk down or simply cut each bulb-like veggie off the base? Well, you can do both depending upon how many you need at the time, but in the end the entire plant needs to be cut down.
Shaving Brussels Sprouts is a simple task, especially if you have a food processor – just use your slicing attachment. If you don’t have a food processor, a good knife works just as well. The thinner you make the pieces the better because the sprouts break down easily into tender greens when tossed in a vinaigrette.
Shaved Brussels Sprout & Kale Salad with Pecorino is much more than just a pile of winter greens, it’s loaded with pecorino cheese, dried cranberries and tossed in a champagne vinaigrette. The combination is divine and is truly reminiscent of the season. This salad is perfect for holidays because you can make the entire salad ahead, including tossing it with the vinaigrette.
6 cups fresh Brussels Sprouts, about 1 1/2 pounds
1 bunch Lacinato kale or other variety
6 ounces pecorino cheese
1 cup dried cranberries or sour cherries
salt & pepper
1/3 cup champagne vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon honey or agave nectar
1/2 clove of garlic
pinch of salt & pepper
1/2 cup olive oil
1. Wash Brussels Sprouts and pat dry. Using your food processor or knife, shave finely. Remove kale from stems and rough chop into fine pieces. Add both the Brussels Sprouts and kale to a large bowl.
2. Dice pecorino into large chunks and grate finely in food processor or using a box grater. Pour the cheese over the top of greens and add the cranberries. Set aside.
3. In the food processor or blender, add all the vinaigrette ingredients except the olive oil, puree until combined. While the processor is running, drizzle oil in slowly until slightly thickened. Do not drizzle too quickly. Pour the vinaigrette over the entire salad and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours. Serve and enjoy!