Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Alex's Brussels Sprouts Salad with Bacon, Avocado, and Lemony Dijon Dressing

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I dare you to try this salad and still tell me that Brussels sprouts are not your thing...

I remember when Brussels sprouts were the reject side dish at my family's holiday dinner.  That is for everyone except for my younger brother who would always request them for some unknown reason, probably just because he knew I would dread having to eat my requisite one sprout, and making things a little annoying for me was his duty as younger brother.  Or maybe he actually liked them, but probably not.  My granny used to make them with a delicious cheesy sauce on them, and that was my favourite way to eat them because I could smother my requisite one sprout with five servings of delicious cheese sauce to mask the flavour.  It barely worked.  But my love for cheese sauce grew stronger and still grows every day.

Nowadays Brussels sprouts are cool again, and I don't know if it's that my tastes have changed, or more likely if it's the bacon that always seems to get thrown in with them, but I love like them!  Back in 2012 I posted this Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Shallots recipe that I made as a side dish to a bacon themed dinner party that we hosted at our house.  Since then I can't get enough bacon and sprouts, which is where this salad comes in.  

The recipe is adapted from one found on my brother's girlfriend Alex's blog, The Bookish Cook, and it is bright, crisp, and packed with flavour.  Alex is a total natural in the kitchen, and ALL OF HER recipes come from her own head, which is something I am insanely jealous of.  She makes this salad at home because it's my brother's favourite (you can see he is still keeping up the charade that he likes Brussels sprouts!), or in his words it's, 'sick.'  Well frick, I agree, this salad is downright flu-like!  I'm feeling chills coming on.  I may need to take a day off of work.  I...ok, ok, that's more than enough.

This salad takes a little while to prepare because you have to peel each little Brussels sprout 'head' (well, that's what they look like!) one by one to make the leaves for the salad.  The Hubby stood at the counter and peeled for about 30 minutes, with only about four or five curse all in all pretty good!

The Hubby's Peeling Efforts

The effort was worth it in the end. Once you have your sprouts peeled, you throw them in their raw form into a bowl with some toasted pumpkin seeds, some fresh sliced avocado, some crispy bacon, some dried cranberries, and some lemony dijon dressing, then toss and serve.  This salad is a nutritional powerhouse.  If you have leftovers, the salad will stay fresh and not wilt if you want to eat the rest the next night.  The Hubby must have been ok with all the peeling because he suggested we quadruple the recipe and bring it to Boxing Day dinner this year...that's 4 pounds of sprout peeling in our future!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays everyone!

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One Year Ago:  Amy's Lentil Soup Copycat Recipe
Two Years Ago:  The Best Mashed Potatoes I've Ever Eaten
Three Years Ago:  Chicken Cacciatore

Brussels Sprouts Salad with Bacon, Avocado, and Lemony Dressing

Serves: 6 - 8 side dishes


  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed
  • 3 sliced cooked bacon, chopped into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds or pepitas, toasted (I put into oven at 325F for 10 minutes, monitoring closely, then cool for 10 minutes)
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries, chopped into small pieces
  • 1 avocado, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 & 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • Freshly grated black pepper

Start by slicing off the hard end of each Brussels sprout, pulling off the leaves one by one, and placing the leaves into a medium-sized salad bowl.  Once you are done, give yourself a pat on the back.  Next, add the bacon, pumpkin seeds (or pepitas), dried cranberries, and avocado to the bowl.

To make your dressing, add olive oil, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, lemon zest, and pepper to a container with a lid.  Close lid and shake for 10 seconds until well-combined.  Add dressing to salad and lightly toss.  Enjoy!

Recipe Source:  The Bookish Cook - Dijon Brussels Sprouts Salad with Bacon


  1. Haha Megan, does Alex have you convinced yet that perhaps I really did like Brussels sprouts growing up and that maybe I developed sophisticated taste buds early on in childhood? Haha, but seriously, if you don't like Brussels spouts then this salad will biochemically alter the genetic make-up of your taste-bud DNA (tbDNA) to produce proteins designed to build more sophisticated tastebuds on the surface of your tongue in place of the old tastebuds which are dissolved into your saliva and disposed of. This salad will change your negative psychological schema that you have built around the cabbage family by enlightening your new and sophisticated tastebuds with the soft and gentle embrace of the pedals of the one they call Brussel.

    1. Haha - you're hilarious! May I remind you of how your credibility was lost after the 'music causes car-sickness' charade of the mid-90's??

      But, this salad IS awesome!!!! Thanks bro/Alex. :)


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