Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Stand Out Sides: Warm Brussel Sprout Salad

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Brussel sprouts have never been a favorite of John.  In fact, this Thanksgiving when he came to my house for dinner, I absolutely thought he was going to pass on Mom's roasted brussel sprouts entirely.  But, he is a very good sport and gave them a try.  Well, imagine my surprise when later that night he said to me, "You know, I really hate brussel sprouts, but your Mom's brussel sprouts were SO GOOD".  I could only laugh.  And for the last few months, Mom's brussel sprouts have been a frequent joke in the family.

Sometimes it takes getting out of your comfort zone to find something you really enjoy; I think the same is true in life.  John and I met in a completely random, probably could never be duplicated again, meeting.  It's those kind of spontaneous and unplanned meetings that can sometimes reward you with the best things life has to offer.  Despite the hard times we've been going through being separated, I think we both know something special when we see it.  And we work extra hard to make sure that it stays that way.

Mom and Dad have always done a great job of pushing their children out of their comfort zones through new experiences, new foods, or new people.  I think that kind of experience at an early age helps children develop a great sense of self (and self-confidence, while we're at it).  At least it did for us three.  So when Mom and I were planning our weekend menu, and this salad came up, we paused.  But then, we went for it because we knew that sometimes things aren't always what they appear. 

Even if you dislike brussel sprouts, or are intimidated by their weird looking shape and size, I encourage you to try this recipe.  It may be out of your comfort zone, but like us, it might turn into the best thing you've ever made. 
Warm Brussel Sprout Salad (adapted from here)
Serves:  4
1 pound brussel sprouts
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup walnuts
1/2 cup dried cranberries

Thinly slice the brussel sprouts.  Pour the olive oil into a large skillet over medium heat.  When the olive oil is warm, add brussel sprouts.  Season with nutmeg, salt, and pepper.  Cook, stirring until brussel sprouts have wilted and are bright green (about 3 minutes).  Add walnuts and cranberries.  Toss until well-combined and warmed through.  Serve immediately.



We are in love with this salad which while called a "salad" is actually perfect for the winter and spring where it warms you right up.  The ingredients are healthy but hearty.  And, you can feel good about trying something new!

Until the next time my oven is on...

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Welcome! I'm Dani (aka the Growing Foodie), just a girl balancing her career and passion for all things edible in NYC. I hope you'll join me in my adventures in life, through food. (Click for More)
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