Brussel Salad 1

Though I love veggies all year round, come autumn and winter I find myself missing the raw crunch of produce like, tomatoes, cucumbers, asparagus, and many others that favor warm weather growing seasons. Though I occasionally ignore the part of my conscience that tells me to eat seasonally, I try my hardest to abide by the principles of sustainable agriculture by avoiding foods that have to travel long distances from other regions or that have to be grown in a hothouse.

 

Here is a harvest calendar for New England that I often refer to when selecting produce. If eating with the seasons is something that interests you and you would like to start playing around with it, I highly recommend printing out a copy to stick on your refrigerator. It’s a great way to simplify what can often seem complex and intimidating.   The rewards of eating in harmony with nature are endless, but one of my favorite and most tangible is that when you eat with the seasons you eat foods that are picked at the very height of their freshness. Not only are they richer in nutrients, but they are so much more delicious than the wilted, sad looking vegetables often found in the produce aisle this time of year.

 

Right now for example, brussel sprouts are the one! They love the cool weather and their flavor even heightens after a light frost or two. In addition to being delicious and versatile (they are great raw, as in this salad, or roasted in the oven!) they also contain the same healing antioxidants, enzymes, vitamins and minerals as other cruciferous veggies.

 

Ingredients:

for dressing: 1/4 cup olive oil, 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 1 tsp. dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon grade a maple syrup, good squeeze of lemon, salt and pepper to taste.

for salad: 1 honeycrisp apple, 20 medium sized brussel sprouts.

Directions:

To make dressing, whisk together vinegar, mustard, maple syrup and lemon. Drizzle in olive oil and whisk until combined. Season to taste with salt and pepper.Core apple and slice into thin matchsticks.Trim ends of Brussels sprouts and remove any outer damaged leaves and discard. Using a mandoline slicer or a very sharp knife, slice sprouts almost paper thin or as thin as you possibly can. Place shaved sprouts in a large bowl. Toss with apples and dressing.Divide salad among serving dishes and garnish with a generous sprinkle of freshly grated parmesan.