Warm Brussels Sprout Salad

From Geoff Last

2014 Jan/Feb

Ingredients:

Vinaigrette:

  • 1 T. red wine vinegar
  • 3 T. high quality olive oil
  • 1 T. grainy Dijon mustard
  • 1 T. maple syrup
  • sea salt and pepper to taste

Salad:

  • 1 lb. Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
  • 2 T. olive oil for frying
  • 5 oz. pancetta (or bacon) cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1 ball of burrata, fior de latte or bocconcini, torn or chopped into small pieces
  • 1 handful home-made croutons
  • 1 head of frisée (you can substitute with other slightly bitter greens)
  • 1 large tart crisp apple, skin on, julienned

Directions:

To make the vinaigrette, add the vinegar to a large bowl and whisk in the olive oil in a thin stream to emulsify. Add the mustard and maple syrup and season with salt and pepper to taste, then whisk.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and blanch the Brussels sprouts for a couple of minutes, then drain them and plunge them into an ice bath. Once they are completely cool, drain them well and set aside.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add the olive oil, then add the pancetta and fry until it just starts to get crisp. Add the Brussels sprouts, flat- side-down, and reduce heat to medium. Cook them for about 5 minutes until they take on colour and start to caramelize. Toss them around in the pan a bit and remove from heat. Transfer them to the bowl with the vinaigrette, add the cheese and toss – you want the heat from the Brussels sprouts to melt the cheese slightly – then add the remaining ingredients and toss to combine. Serve warm. Serves 4-6.

You can serve a full-bodied white wine with this dish or a lighter-bodied red.