This incredible shaved brussels sprouts salad is full of crunchy almonds and salty and nutty Parmesan and it is anything but boring. The biggest deal closer is the ridiculously simple lemony garlic dressing that makes this taste like it came straight out of a restaurant kitchen.
I am blessed to live in Chicago for one extremely important reason. The food. The big guy up there really screwed us Chicagoans with the weather…but somewhere along the line he decided that since we were so punished with the crappy weather he should gift us with a magnet that is only felt by the culinary elite…a magnet that attracts them to this wonderfully cold town.
I could not imagine any other reason for chef’s to flock to this wonderfully cold city of ours. Where nine months of the year we cuddle up in dark restaurants, sipping hot cocoa, warm lattes and signature $14 cocktails in hopes of seeing the first butterfly that would soon tell tales of spring.
On one such evening, as the final leaves had fallen off of the trees, my friend Yelena (Yelen as I call her. The same Yelen that has a multitude of kitchen disasters) and I met up downtown in the new restaurant, Siena Tavern by chef owner Top Chef Fabio Viviani.
Yelen and I ordered all sorts of lovely offerings. But there was one particular item that we ended up ordering two of: The Shaved Brussels Sprout salad. I had no idea a salad could have SO much flavor with so few ingredients. There were crunchy Marcona almonds, bite size chunks of deliciously nutty and salty Parmesan and there was a dressing that was pure heaven.
“Do it Mila. Make it. Make the salad then bring it over, to me.” Yelen ordered me.
Well it took me quite some time (sorry Yelen) things got away from me. But this year when I decided to put together a yummy salad for Thanksgiving that no one had gotten bored of yet… I decided that this was definitely the one.
It of course is listed in my 2016 Thanksgiving & Christmas Dinner Plan Extravaganza! Make sure you check out all the other yums that go along with it!
I obsessed over getting the salad dressing JUST right. Until I realized…there was no obsessing needed, it was just a super flavorful and potent lemon and garlic dressing with dijon mustard. Once I figured that part out, I tweaked a few of the other details and added two good cloves of garlic to give it that extra pizazz I like my food to have. I also ended up using stone ground mustard in addition to the classic Dijon. It just boasts so much more flavor than classic Dijon and this beautiful shaved brussels sprouts salad DESERVED only the best. I still used Dijon as an emulsifier.
You see when making a salad, even Caesar dressings, you always add in a touch of Dijon in there so that it emulsifies it, i.e. binds it together into one cohesive mixture. And after all the ingredients are combined, only THEN do you stream in the olive oil. This will insure a smooth and velvety dressing.
I am pretty excited to unveil this today actually. BECAUSE I get to call Yelen and tell her that I finally recreated her FAVE! But it is also in the 30’s F here so she can make this herself, I am not bringing it over.
- 1 package of shaved brussels sprouts (about 16 oz)
- ¼ cup slivered almonds
- ½ cup chunked Parmesan (just break them off with a knife into chunks.
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon stone ground mustard
- 2 garlic cloves, minced on a microplane
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- Place all the salad ingredients into a bowl. Garnishing with the almonds and Parmesan. Let them stay on top.
- For the dressing, add the first 4 ingredients to a bowl and combine.
- Stream in the olive oil into the aforementioned dressing ingredients and whisk until fully combined.
- Taste and season with salt and pepper.
- Drizzle dressing over the salad right before serving and toss to combine.
2. The original recipe had Marcona almonds. But for starters they are hard to find. And secondly they are super pricy. Plus I love the slivered almonds for this salad more any how.