So…this salad. It’s amazing. A wonderful combination of brussels sprouts, cherry tomatoes, goat cheese, a sweet and spicy vinaigrette with diced prosciutto, and the pièce de résistance: pretzel croutons. The pretzel croutons were a revelation – I want to put them on every salad I eat, which isn’t out of the question since they are so easy to make. Just tear up some pretzel rolls, mix with olive oil, salt and pepper, toast in the oven for about 15 minutes, and then try not to eat all of them before they make it on the salad.
Other than chopping all the ingredients, which you can avoid a large portion of by buying pre-shaved brussels sprouts from Trader Joe’s, making the croutons was the most time consuming part of this recipe. I think from start to finish it took about 30 minutes to make, further solidifying it as my new favorite meal. I only made a half recipe, which was enough to serve 3-4 people as a main course. The full recipe would make a great addition to a large holiday meal, but be warned that you’ll need a really large serving bowl.
Finally, a little plug for the Spoon Fork Bacon blog that I got this recipe from, which is my latest food blog obsession and whose recipes have started to dominate my Pinterest boards. They are the perfect combination of gorgeous food photography and delicious original recipes – I have yet to make something that didn’t get rave reviews. If you haven’t spent hours going through their recipe archives like I have, I would recommend it.
Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with a Warm Prosciutto-Mustard Vinaigrette & Pretzel Croutons
from Spoon Fork Bacon | serves 10-12
4 ounces pretzel bread (or pretzel rolls), torn into bite sized pieces
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 1/2 lbs. shaved or thinly sliced Brussels sprouts
1 1/2 cups halved cherry tomatoes
6 ounces goat cheese, crumbled (optional)
for the vinaigrette:
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
4 ounces prosciutto, finely diced
1 shallot, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
1 1/2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350˚F. Place pretzel pieces and oil into a large mixing bowl, season with salt and pepper, and toss together (I’d recommend doing this in the bowl you will eventually mix and serve the salad in – it will save you from having to wash an extra dish). Spread onto a baking sheet, in a single layer, and toast for 15 to 20 minutes or until light and crisp. Remove from oven and allow pretzel bits to cool.
Place a small sauté pan over medium-high heat and melt butter. Add prosciutto and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes or until prosciutto browns. Pour contents into a mixing bowl and add remaining vinaigrette ingredients, except oil. Whisk together and add oil in a slow and steady stream until fully incorporated. Adjust seasonings and set aside until ready to use.
Place Brussels sprouts, pretzel croutons, cherry tomatoes and goat cheese (if using) into a large salad bowl and toss together with vinaigrette. Adjust seasonings and allow salad to sit for about 10 minutes before tossing one more time and serving.