I don’t think I’ve ever been as excited about a big bowl of greens. The hardy, wintery kind – a tub of spring mix just won’t cut it here. Nor would straight-up kale – I actually went to the store just to buy a couple handfuls of Brussels sprouts to add to the bowl – the biggest ones I could find, to make them easier to slice. They were more like mini cabbages. I needed something I could really chew on.
It has been a food-heavy week; there have been restaurant openings, I got to emcee a fancy brunch at River Cafe and dinners at CharCut (where for the first course of our progressive dinner they served us one-pound wild boar and Chorizo meatballs smothered with bone marrow béchamel), Catch and Sky 360, and Geoff Rogers‘ new restaurant, Market. We went for ‘shroom pizza and ice cream, checked out Candela Lounge, and after all that I practically ran to Mango Shiva on Saturday morning when I heard they had added butter chicken waffles to their brunch menu.
(If you thought naan was a good pairing, wait until you try butter chicken over crispy waffles.)
And looking back here I’ve been all about chocolate muffins and browned butter blondies, meatballs and mac & cheese. With bacon! See? Kale is clearly called for.
Brassicas (cabbage, kale, Brussels sprouts) and lemon and Parmesan get along splendidly; and I love it thinly sliced into slaw. Haters of Brussels sprouts – my parents are among them – are typically turned off by the bitter, sulfur-like taste they tend to take on when they’re even slightly overcooked. Eating them raw eliminates any chance of that; when I served this to my mom and dad last night, both had seconds. (I didn’t inform them of the presence of B. sprouts until after.)
I’m making a second batch tonight – a single batch isn’t quite enough of a ballast. And tomorrow, I think I’ll try the leftovers topped with a poached egg.
Kale & Brussels Sprout Salad
Adapted from Bon Appétit
1 bunch leafy green kale
6-10 big Brussels sprouts
1 small chunk of purple onion, thinly sliced or minced
1/3 cup whole roasted, salted, almonds, roughly chopped
1/2 cup grated Parmesan or Pecorino
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp. grainy mustard
1 small garlic clove, finely grated
1 tsp. sugar
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Remove the ribs and thinly slice the leaves of kale (I do this by stacking or gathering them up in a bunch, then slicing through the stack); cut the Brussels sprouts in half lengthwise and thinly slice them too, holding onto the stem (and then tossing the last bit of stem out). Put them into a bowl with the purple onion.
To make the dressing, shake all the ingredients together in a jar or whisk them in a small bowl. Drizzle generously over the kale and Brussels sprouts and toss to coat. Scatter with almonds and Parmesan and serve. Serves 6.