VICTORY GARDENS: New Year’s Resolution For 2013? Eat A Lot More Brussels Sprouts!

December 31, 2012 

by Lisa Giroday, Sandra Lopuch and Sam Philips | Feeling a little post-holiday food and drink-related lethargy whilst wearily contemplating your New Years’ Resolutions? Embarking on a cleanse/health-kick along with everyone else you know? If you said yes to either question (or both), join the club. Our inability to write today reflects our own lethargy, so let’s just cut to the goodness… 

Brussels sprouts – like kale, collards, and broccoli – are part of the species Brassica oleracea. They’re all big time winter species, so we can’t help but mention and promote them often. They contain a decent amount of vitamin A, vitamin C, folic acid and dietary fiber, plus they’re believed to protect against colon cancer. We all know that they are good for us, even though we may have doubted them when we were kids.

To showcase them this week, we’re posting a restorative slaw recipe of Black Kale, Apple and Brussels Sprouts from Alexander McNaughton and Chashma Heinze (the two wizards behind Pastiche Culinary Concepts). Check it out in all its delicious, uncomplicated glory after the leap…

Black Kale, Apple and Brussels Sprout Slaw

Serves 6 as a side

A crisp yet surprisingly tender salad using the best of winter’s fresh and local harvest. Pair this with a baked squash gratin, braised meats or include as a fine addition to a lunchtime sandwich.

8-10 medium black kale leaves, de-stemmed
1 grapefruit sized Savoy or Napa cabbage or 2 small Belgian endives
4 medium Brussels sprouts
½ medium crisp, tart apple (such as Golden Aurora, Mutsu or Granny Smith)
¼ small red onion
One large handful of chickweed, watercress, tatsoi or other small, flavourful leafy winter greens

Dressing

¼ cup virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. pumpkin seed oil
1 tsp honey or maple syrup
1 tsp unpasteurized apple cider vinegar
½ juice of a lemon
2-3 Tbsp of natural yogurt
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Unrefined sea salt to taste

Optional

15-20 toasted hazelnuts, almonds or walnuts roughly chopped

De-stem kale leaves and chiffonade along with Brussels sprouts and your choice of cabbage or endive. The tender texture of this salad depends on the fineness of your cut, so take care to slice the Brussels sprouts and endive or cabbage particularly thin because of their robust flavor. Peel (if you wish) and core apple, cut the half into 1/3’s and slice thinly or pass through a mandolin. Wash and leaf greens; mince the red onion.

With a whisk, combine all dressing ingredients at the bottom of your large mixing bowl and all remaining salad ingredients. Toss just before serving and sprinkle with optional choice of nuts.

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Victory Gardens is a team of local urban farmers for hire. Lisa, Sandra and Sam help transform tired or underused residential and commercial green spaces into food producing gardens. Their goal is to challenge the way communities use space and to participate in the change needed to consume food more sustainably. For the rest of the growing season, they’ve hooked up with Scout to share some cool tips and tricks on how to get the best from of our own backyards.