Colorful Kale, Apple, and Fennel Slaw with Tart Cherries

Recently we had another death in my parish and, like I often do, I decided to bring a salad to the funeral luncheon. I was looking for something that would hold up well with refrigeration and this recipe from the Love Real Food cookbook seemed to meet those needs. The sweet lime dressing was a great contrast to the cherries and slight spiciness of the fennel. The flavors all complemented one another quite nicely.

Colorful Kale, Apple, and Fennel Slaw

Colorful Kale, Apple, and Fennel Slaw with Tart Cherries

2 c packed chopped Tuscan kale leaves, tough ribs removed
2 c thinly sliced red cabbage
2 c thinly sliced brussels sprouts, tough ends trimmed
1 c thinly sliced raw fennel
1 medium-large Granny Smith apple, cut into 1/2 in cubes
1/2 c chopped dried tart cherries

3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbsp lime juice
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp honey or maple syrup
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp sea salt

To prepare the slaw: In a large bowl, combine the kale, cabbage, brussels sprouts, fennel, apple, and dried cherries.

To make the dressing: In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, honey, vinegar, mustard, and salt until blended. Taste and adjust as necessary.

Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss to combine. For best flavor, let the salad marinate for 15 to 20 minutes before serving. This slaw keeps well, chilled, for 2 to 3 days.


Brussels Sprouts

For our immediate family dinner celebration, my dad asked if I would be willing to make brussels sprouts.  Obviously, since I make them all the time, I was excited to make some for the family.  I had this recipe from the Mile End Cookbook tucked away and it seemed like a fitting recipe, with some apples in it as well.  I wish I had roasted the sprouts a little bit longer because while they were cooked appropriately, they could have used just a little more char on them.  But, as with the other recipes I’ve tried from this cookbook, this turned out great.  I added a bit more salt and pepper after cooking and another drizzle of honey, but overall, I was highly satisfied with the sprouts.

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Brussels Sprouts

For Candied Walnuts
1 Tbsp unsalted butter or canola oil
1/4 c walnut pieces
1 tsp kosher salt
leaves of 2 sprigs of rosemary
2 Tbsp honey

For Sprouts and Apples
1 1/2 lb Brussels sprouts, cut in half
1 Tbsp canola oil
1 tsp kosher salt
Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp unsalted butter or extra virgin olive oil
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
juice of 1 lemon

Make the candied walnuts: Heat the butter or oil in a small skillet over medium heat and add the walnut pieces and salt.  Cook, stirring frequently, until the walnuts start to take on a light golden color; add the rosemary and cook for one minute more.  Add the honey, stir, and remove from the heat.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Make the sprouts and apples: Toss the Brussels sprouts with the canola oil, salt, and pepper.  Spread them out on a 10×15 inch baking sheet and roast them until crisp-tender, 12 to 15 minutes.  Set aside.

To finish the dish, heat the butter or olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the apple pieces, and cook them until lightly browned, about 2 minutes.  Add the candied walnuts, Brussels sprouts, and lemon juice, and toss to combine.  Adjust the seasoning if needed.

Corn Bread Dressing with Brussels Sprouts

Although I made this a month ago for Thanksgiving, I found this recipe to be slightly disappointing.  I had high hopes that a fresh cornbread dressing that had all of these different things I loved added to it would create a delicious all-in-one side for the holidays.  Instead, I found it to be dry, and missing some levels of flavor.  The recipe came from Food & Wine 2009 Cookbook and made two pans.  Perhaps I was mostly overwhelmed by the amount of food that it made and there only being 4 of us, but it didn’t quite hold up to what I was hoping for.  If anyone else has made the recipe and had greater luck, I’d love to hear about it.

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Cornbread Dressing with Brussels Sprouts

Corn Bread

2 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 1/2 c stone-ground yellow cornmeal
2 1/2 c flour
1/4 c sugar
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking soda
3 c buttermilk
2 large eggs
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, melted


4 Tbsp unsalted butter
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 celery ribs, finely diced
1 carrot, finely diced
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 lb thinly sliced prosciutto, finely chopped
1 Tbsp chopped sage
1 c dry white wine
3 eggs
2 c chicken stock
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 lb brussels sprouts, halved lengthwise

Make the cornbread: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Pour the oil onto an 11×17 rimmed baking sheet and heat in the oven.  In a large bowl, whisk the cornmeal with the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda.  In another bowl, whisk the buttermilk with the eggs.  Pour the buttermilk mixture into the dry ingredients, add the melted butter and stir until just blended.  Remove the baking sheet from the oven and swirl to coat with the oil.  Scrape the batter onto the baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes, until the cornbread is springy.  Transfer to a rack and let cool.  Lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees.

Prepare the dressing: Generously butter two 9-by-13 pans.  In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil.  Add the celery, carrot, and onion and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables have softened, about 10 minutes.  Add the prosciutto and sage and cook until the prosciutto starts to crisp, about 8 minutes.  Stir in 1/2 cup of the white wine and let cool slightly.

Crumble the cooled cornbread into a large bowl in small chunks.  In a bowl, whisk the eggs with the stock, then pour over the cornbread.  Add the prosciutto mixture, season with the salt and pepper, and toss to combine.  Spread the cornbread dressing in the prepared baking pans.

Wipe out the skillet and melt the remaining 2 Tbsp of butter in the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil.  Add the brussel sprout and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until they begin to brown, 10 minutes.  Add the remaining 1/2 c of white wine and cook 5 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.

Tuck the brussels sprouts into the dressing.  Cover and bake for 20 minutes, until heated through.  Uncover and bake for 10 minutes, longer, until crisp on top.  Serve hot.

Brussels Sprouts with Caramelized Garlic and Lemon Peel

It’s another day, so another brussels sprout recipe that I’m trying out.  For our staff holiday party last week, we ordered some casseroles from our dining service provider and people brought appetizers, sides, and desserts.  There were a number of hits, including some delicious cornbread that is a family recipe passed down from year to year, great crisp salads, cannoli dip, skewers with meats and cheeses, and of course lots of holiday sweets.  After last year’s brussels sprouts went over well and I brought home zero leftovers, I thought I’d make a double batch of this recipe from Plenty More.  I caramelized the garlic and prepped the lemon peel the night before and then after sauteeing all of the sprouts, I brought the garlic and lemon back in the skillet.  The grocery stores around here didn’t have red chiles, so I added a couple serrano chiles instead.

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Brussels Sprouts with Caramelized Garlic and Lemon Peel

7 o garlic, cloves removed and peeled (5 medium heads or 3 large heads)
1/2 c olive oil
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
3 Tbsp superfine sugar
1 medium lemon
1 1/3 lb brussels sprouts
1 red chile, seeded and finely chopped
2/3 c basil leaves, coarsely shredded
salt and black pepper

Start with eh garlic.  Bring a saucepan of water to a boil, add the garlic, and blanch for 3 minutes.  Drain, dry the pan, and pour in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.  Return the garlic to the pan and fry over high heat for 2 minutes, stirring all the time, until golden on all sides.  Add the vinegar, 1 tablespoon of the sugar, 6 tablespoons water, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.  Bring to a boil and simmer gently over medium heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until hardly any liquid is left, the cloves have caramelized, and the syrup is thick.  Set the pan aside.

To prepare the lemon peel, use a vegetable peeler to shave off wide strips of lemon rind; avoid the white pith.  Cut the strips crosswise into paper-thin slices and place them in a small saucepan.  Squeeze the lemon, measure the juice, and add water as needed to total 7 tablespoons.  Pour over the lemon rind, add the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, and bring to a light simmer.  Cook for 12 to 15 minutes, until the syrup is reduced to about one-third.  Set aside to cool down and then drain the lemon, discarding the syrup.

Meanwhile, trim the sprouts and cut them in half lengthwise.  Place about 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large, heavy pan, and heat over high heat.  Add half the sprouts, 1/8 tsp salt, and a good grind of black pepper and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring once or twice, so that they char well without breaking up; add oil if needed.  The sprouts will have softened but still retain a bite.  Transfer to a bowl and continue with the remaining oil and sprouts.

Once the sprouts are cooked, mix them with the chile and with the garlic and its syrup.  Stir and leave aside for about 10 minutes.  Stir in the basil and lemon peel and serve warm or at room temperature.

Charred Brussels Sprouts with Bagna Cauda

This came from the Twin Cities Chef’s Table cookbook and looked to be a recipe with a lot of things I love and a few things I would be nervous to eat (anchovy fillets), so with a goal of being a little adventuresome, I decided it was time to take this step.

Charred Brussels Sprouts with Bagna Cauda

Charred Brussels Sprouts with Bagna Cauda

Bagna Cauda:

3 oz oil-packed anchovy fillets, rinsed (Scalia brand preferred, if you can find it)
1 c Italian parsley leaves
1/4 lb unsalted butter
1 garlic clove, peeled and grated


1-2 c kosher salt
1 Tbsp baking soda
1 1/2 lb brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise
1/2 c vegetable oil
1/4 c bagna cauda
1/4 c lemon juice
2 Tbsp chopped chives

To make the bagna cauda: Place all ingredients in food processor and puree until smooth.  This makes more than is needed for the brussels sprouts recipe; cover and chill leftover butter, or wrap and freeze for up to a month.

To make the brussels sprouts: Fill a large bowl with ice water and set aside.  Fill a dutch oven or other large pot with water.  Season water with enough salt “to taste like the ocean.”  Add baking soda and bring to a boil.

Blanch brussels sprouts in boiling water until just tender, about 5 minutes.  Drain in a colander and transfer sprouts immediately to ice bath to halt cooking.  When sprouts are cooled, after 3-4 minutes, drain once again in colander.

Heat oil in a 12-inch (or larger) saute pan over high heat until the oil is very hot and starts to smoke.  Carefully add brussels sprouts, cut side down, and cook until browned, about 5 minutes.  Add bagna cauda, turn heat to low, and continue cooking until butter melts.  Add the lemon juice and chives, stir to coat the sprouts, and season with salt, if needed.

Brussels Sprout, Bacon, and Gruyere Frittata

Sometimes, breakfast for dinner sounds delicious.  And, sometimes I want to figure out how to incorporate my favorite brussels sprouts into breakfast.  This frittata accomplishes either in a fantastic way.  It’s the right balance of all the tastes.  I really don’t have anything else to say, except this is perfection in a skillet.  Recipe is from 2015 Food and Wine Annual Cookbook.


Brussels Sprouts, Bacon, and Gruyere Frittata

1/2 pound thick-cut bacon, diced
2 shallots, halved and thinly sliced
3/4 pound brussels sprouts, halved and sliced 1/4 inch thick
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
8 large eggs
2 tablespoons whole milk
1 cup shredded Gruyère cheese
1/4 cup snipped chives

Preheat the broiler and position a rack 6 inches from the heat. In a 12-inch nonstick ovenproof skillet, cook the bacon over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the brussels sprouts, season with salt and pepper and cook, tossing occasionally, until crisp-tender and lightly browned, about 5 minutes.

 Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat the eggs with the milk, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Stir in the shredded cheese and snipped chives. Pour the egg mixture into the skillet and cook over moderate heat, stirring gently, until the eggs start to set and the bottom is lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer the skillet to the oven and broil the frittata for about 3 minutes, until the center is just set. Run a rubber spatula around the edge of the frittata and slide it onto a serving plate, then cut it into 6 pieces and serve.

Shaved Broccoli and Brussels Sprouts Slaw

Finding a salad that will hold up for a day that doesn’t involve pasta or other grains can sometimes be a challenge.  For one of the funerals we had this month, I wanted to bring a salad that would hold up, but also be a little outside the box.  This recipe came from the August 2016 Cooking Light magazine and I’m so glad I made it.  It’s a nice change from the usual broccoli salad with mayonnaise and sunflower seeds.

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Shaved Broccoli and Brussels Sprouts Slaw

12 oz broccoli stalks
8 oz Brussels sprouts, trimmed
1/2 tsp kosher salt, divided
3 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp mayonnaise
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 oz grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 c seedless red grapes, halved
2 Tbsp pine nuts

Thinly slice broccoli and Brussels sprouts in a food processor fitted with the slicing blade.  Sprinkle with 1/4 tsp salt; toss to coat.

Combine remaining salt , oil, and next 5 ingredients (through cheese) in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.  Add dressing, grapes, and pine nuts to broccoli mixture; toss.