Brussels Sprouts and Green Apple Salad
August 19, 2020 by Nicole Collins
Do you guys talk to your parents or children every day?
If you don’t, you should. I do. I call my mama every single day. I won’t give you the “hold on tight to your loved ones, because tomorrow isn’t promised” speech today. But, know that I’m thinking it.
Many conversations with my mom start the same way. During the week it’s “What are you doing? Watching TV, what are you doing? I just finished work.” On the weekends, it’s basically the same greeting. But instead of me telling her that I just finished work, I usually say that I just finished cooking. Then, she’ll ask me what I was cooking. Let’s just say that I didn’t get my palette from my mama, because way too often her response is “gross”.
After I told her about today’s recipe and the brussels sprouts in it, I think I actually got an “eww, gross”. And unfortunately, sooooooo many people feel that way about brussels sprouts. But, I love them. And, I’m going to try to convert anyone to “Team Brussels” that I can. So, I started telling her about how they’re basically just little cabbages. I told her when they’re raw, shredded, and dressed, they’re practically just a fancy coleslaw. And I may be wrong, but after an in depth conversation about cabbage and brussels sprouts, she sounded a lot less disgusted than the beginning of our chat.
My goal today is to add some more folks to the brussels sprouts lovers category, and this recipe is just the way to do it.
So today, we’re making Brussels Sprouts and Green Apple Salad!
I wasn’t lying when I said that this is like a fancy coleslaw. And I promise you that if I didn’t tell you otherwise, that’s exactly what you’d think it is.
Let’s talk brussels sprouts. We’re going to keep our sprouts raw today, and shave them up nice and thin for our salad. So, trim off the little nubbins on the end, slice them in half, then carefully run your knife through them to make thin little shreds. Super easy! And brussels sprouts go a long way when they’re shredded too. They don’t look like much at first, but they really fill out a bowl when they’re shredded.
To our salad, we’re going to add a mix of sweet and savory elements. You guys know that I love a good salty/sweet combo. Really thinly sliced green apple, toasted pecans, sweet craisins, thinly sliced shallot or red onion, and creamy goat cheese all get tossed into the bowl with the shredded brussels. Then, the whole situation gets coated in a my maple mustard dressing (yes, you’ve seen this dressing before) and the teeniest tiniest pinch of salt. Mix, serve, devour!
I prefer this salad fresh. This is when it’s at it’s prime. Everything is crispy crunchy. Everything is at peak flavor. You can really taste each individual component. But, this recipe makes a big bowl of salad. So, if you give it a couple of days in the fridge, the dressing really seeps into the sprouts, and they start to soften up a little bit. That’s when it really basically becomes a less wet version of a slaw. If you want to keep things crunchy and you know you’re not serving this whole salad at once, wait to add the nuts and dressing until you’re ready to serve. That’s the secret!
When it’s safe to party again, this would be a great healthy side dish. It’s full of flavor. It’s full of texture. And, if you don’t tell anyone that it’s brussels sprouts, you’ll be converting a whole new generation of brussels lovers without them even knowing it!
Ok, everyone. Here’s your homework until the next time we meet. 1. Make this salad. 2. Call you mom/dad/grans/pops/aunts/uncle/sons/daughters or anyone else that you love dearly. K? K.
Can’t wait to hear how many new brussels lovers we have after today.
Brussels Sprouts and Green Apple Salad
Serves: 6 Print
For the Maple Mustard Dressing:
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup maple syrup
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp + 1 tsp dijon mustard
2 tbsp stone ground mustard
salt and pepper, to taste
For the Salad:
1 lb brussels sprouts, trimmed and shaved
1 granny smith apple, matchstick sliced
1 shallot, thinly sliced
½ cup craisins
1 cup toasted pecans, chopped
4 oz goat cheese, crumbled
salt, to taste
Make the dressing: Add all ingredients for dressing to the bowl of a small food processor or blender. Process until fully combined, and the dressing is smooth. Set aside.
Assemble the salad: Add brussels sprouts, apple, shallot, pecans, craisins, goat cheese, dressing, and a teeny tiny pinch of salt to a large mixing bowl. Toss gently to combine and coat the veggies in dressing. Serve!
*To get a nice shave on the brussels sprouts, cut the root off at the bottom, slice the sprout in half, and thinly slice each bulb.
*You could use red onion in place of the shallots. Thinly slice the red onion, then soak them in cold water for 15-20 mins to take out the extra sting. Dry really well, and add them to the salad as an easy shallot stand in.
*To toast the pecans, heat a dry non stick skillet over medium heat. Add the pecans to the skillet, and cook for 3-4 mins, stirring occasionally, until the pecans start to deepen in color and become fragrant.
*To matchstick chop an apple, slice the apple into thin slices vertically on both sides of the core. Stack a few slices together, and cut thin strips. Cut the strips in half, if desired.
*We're not adding the pinch of salt to the salad for seasoning purposes. We're using it to enhance the flavors of some of the sweeter elements we have in the salad. We truly only need the teeniest pinch.