Monday, November 18, 2013

brussel-sprout salad with pecorino, toasted almonds, and apple.

In last week's issue of NYMagazine, they printed Thanksgiving recipes for two different types of menus.  The "sinful" menu (perfect for a butter lover and glutton at heart) and a "saintly" version (for those who love olive oil and saving their arteries).  

The "saintly" menu was the one that stole my heart. (Minus the whole salmon thing.  Turkey is a non-negotiable on Thanksgiving.)

The "saintly" menu felt fresh and modern.  It mirrors how the boy and I eat on a regular basis.  It's filled with seasonal vegetables prepared in a variety of ways so that your taste buds get to experience different textures and flavors in a new and exciting way. 

This brussel sprouts salad was made twice in 4 days, because it's that good.  I am obsessed with the combination of flavors and textures.  Crunchy! Sweet! Salty! It's the kind of salad where every bite's different which is what takes a salad from good to addicting.  It would be perfect on Thanksgiving Day but just as good eaten the day after Turkey day as a detox meal from all the butter, because in my mind the perfect Thanksgiving is a combination of sinful and saintly.  

Brussels-Sprout Salad with Pecorino, Toasted Almonds, and Apple
Recipe adapted from NY Magazine

Serves 2

This recipe can be kept as is (for a weeknight dinner for two) or quadrupled (for Turkey day dinner).  However you make it, make it immediately. 

½ - ¾ pounds Brussel sprouts
½ apple, julienned
¼ cup almonds sliced or whole
Salt and pepper to taste
¼ teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
Zest of ½ a lemon
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 teaspoons white-wine or sherry vinegar
2 teaspoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
¼ cup + 2 teaspoons olive oil
¼ cup Pecorino Romano, grated, plus more for serving

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Holding each sprout by the stem, cut into very thin slices and then, with your hands, toss them in a mixing bowl to separate the layers.  Drizzle them 2 tablespoons olive oil, smoked paprika, and salt and pepper to taste. Spread the sprouts on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and roast in the oven until they’re crispy, about 10 -12 minutes, before removing them. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees. Place the almonds in a small bowl with 2 teaspoons of olive oil and toss to coat, season with salt, and spread on a baking sheet. Toast the almonds in the oven for about 8 minutes or until lightly browned.  If using whole almonds, chop them when cool.

Put the lemon zest and juice, vinegar, maple syrup, and mustard in a bowl. Whisk until the dressing is smooth, then slowly whisk in the remaining 2 tablespoons oil.

Put the sliced Brussels sprouts, almonds, and apple into a large bowl, pour in the dressing, and toss together. Season to taste with salt and pepper (slightly underseasoning), then top with Pecorino. 

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