Well, the cover has officially been removed from the grill and patio weather is in full swing. Fine, I grill year round. But I do like these first few long days with hours of sun after work and plenty of time to experiment with dinner before it gets dark. I especially like it when the weather is welcoming enough that we can sit outside and catch up while I’m grilling. Who said cooking has to be a solo sport? As far as experiments go, this particular one went very well. I love the bitter crunch of Brussels sprouts and the bite of arugula, and decided to marry the two in a bright salad.
This grilled salad is perfect for entertaining. You can grill the Brussels sprouts an hour or so ahead of time, then pour over the assembled dry ingredients for the salad and toss with dressing just before serving. This will give you plenty of time to finish the rest of the meal, do your hair, and micromanage your husband as he sets the table incorrectly. I also have found a lemon tarragon dressing recipe from Bon Appetit that I think is fantastic as-is, so I’ve provided a link below. If you’re looking for a shortcut, I’m happy to provide one: Brianna’s Lively Lemon Tarragon is delightful. Boom. Now you have even more time to change your outfit three times and re-arrange the cheese tray. Fabulous.
I’ve made this salad several times with a few modifications before settling on my favorite version. The first time I used chevre, but the second time I went with a more flavorful blue cheese. The blue cheese crumbles stayed together better than the chevre, which melted into the grilled Brussels sprouts and left a more creamy texture than I had intended. Also, make sure to toss the Brussels sprouts with the olive oil, garlic, and spices in a large bowl before they go on the grill for maximum flavor. As you remove the sprouts from the grill once they brown, place them back on the same tray or bowl as your tossed them in prior to grilling so they have one last chance to soak up and seasoning. I also finished the grilled sprouts with another drizzle of lemon before I added to the salad.
Other ingredients I think would be fantastic in this salad: avocado, marinated beets, blueberries, fresh basil leaves, and radish. Maybe all at once, maybe not.
Grilled Brussels Sprouts Salad
Serves 6 as a side dish
For the grilled Brussels sprouts, you will need:
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts, stalks trimmed, split in half
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder and cayenne
- 2 teaspoons each black pepper, sea salt, and paprika
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
For the salad, you will need
- 1 bag arugula
- 1/3 cup Marcona almonds (skinned and toasted)
- 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
- 2 clementines, peeled and segmented
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- Sea salt and pepper
- Lemon tarragon dressing, to taste
- Preheat grill to medium heat.
- In a large bowl, stir Brussels sprouts with olive oil, lemon juice, and spices.
- Place on a grill pan and cook until beginning to brown, turning them over occasionally to brown evenly. This took 15 minutes on my grill.
- Remove Brussels sprouts from grill and set aside to cool.
- Toss remaining salad ingredients together, then add Brussels sprouts. Dress just prior to serving.