Kale and Maple Roasted Brussel Sprouts Salad

This salad was a happy accident.  I threw it together mostly with ingredients I already had on hand, though I did buy Brussel sprouts, fresh thyme and shallots for the dressing.  I really loved how the flavors of the smokey goat cheese and coconut bacon balanced with the earthiness of the thyme and light sweetness of the maple roasted Brussel sprouts.  The toasted pine nuts also give a nice crunch to the this rustic salad, perfect for autumn weather!

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For the salad, you will need:
1 lb of Brussel sprouts, trimmed and quartered
4 cups of fresh kale, chopped
1/3 cup of coconut bacon flakes (I use Phoney Baloney brand, but you can make your own!)
Handful of pine nuts
Goat cheese* (*optional if you want to make it vegan)
Maple syrup
Olive oil
Salt and Pepper

For the dressing, you will need:
1 shallot, minced
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
Fresh thyme, minced
1/3 cup of olive oil
1/3 cup of Apple Cider Vinegar
a drizzle of gave Nectar (I used light)
Juice from 1/2 lemon
Salt and Pepper

1) Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

2) Toss the trimmed and quartered Brussel sprouts in a large bowl with a drizzle of maple syrup, olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Spread out the sprouts in a large baking dish.  Roast in the oven for approximately 45 minutes.

3) While the Brussel sprouts are roasting, you can prepare the dressing:  simply whisk all of the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl.  To really incorporate the ingredients you can run them through the food processor.  I simply whisked them together in a bowl and it turned out delicious.

4) Once the dressing is done, you can pan fry the coconut bacon with the pine nuts on medium heat with a little bit of olive oil until browned in the pan.  Coconut bacon cooks very quickly so make sure you watch the pan so the bacon doesn’t burn.

5) Combine chopped kale, roasted Brussel sprouts, coconut bacon, pine nuts, dressing and goat cheese (or leave out goat cheese for the vegans) in a large bowl.  Serve immediately.

I actually roasted 2 lbs of Brussel sprouts, simply because my husband loves to eat regular roasted Brussel sprouts by themselves, so I used 1/2 of the portion in the salad and the rest we ate as part of our dinner.

Hope you enjoy!

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