As I get ready to leave for Thailand, I’m reflecting on foods I missed the last time I was in Southeast Asia. Pasta was definitely up there, as were tacos. By some sort of miracle I found a couple of Italian restaurants that happily served me plate after heaping plate of spaghetti (I wasn’t as lucky with Mexican food). This time around, I think I’m going to miss Brussels sprouts. Yup, seriously.
I never thought I’d be someone who craved vegetables – let alone Brussels sprouts. But the more I eat fresh fruits and veggies, the less I want my old favorites like pizza and pasta. Don’t get me wrong – I still swoon for a slice of vegan pie from Boiler Room. Eating it less frequently, though, makes it even more special. When it comes down to it, all I want is something savory and satisfying. With this Charred Brussels Sprout Salad with Miso Mustard Dressing, all of my needs are met.
I should mention that the inspiration behind this dish comes from one of my favorite vegetarian restaurants in Chicago – Mana Food Bar. My friend (who used to work there) recommended we split a side of Brussels sprouts at happy hour. I knew they’d be good, because everything at Mana is phenomenal, but I had no idea what my tastebuds were in for. Sweet, salty, and tangy all at once, I had to recreate those Brussels sprouts in some form or fashion.
This salad features thinly sliced Brussels sprouts, which I roasted until caramelized and crispy on the edges to really elevate the flavor. The farro adds bulk, which makes the dish perfect as a hearty first course or a lunch all on its own. Dressed with zippy miso mustard dressing, you won’t put your fork down until the very last bite.
This salad features thinly sliced Brussels sprouts, which I roasted until caramelized and crispy on the edges to really elevate the flavor. Dressed with zippy miso mustard dressing, you won’t put your fork down until the very last bite.
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts
- 1 cup farro
- 3 cups water
- 2 Tbsp. coconut oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ tsp. salt
- Few twists of black pepper
For the dressing:
- 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp. yellow or white miso paste
- 1 tsp. meyer lemon juice
- 2 tsp. coconut oil, melted
- ¼ tsp. maple syrup
- 1 Tbsp. water
- Preheat your oven to 400F degrees. Remove the blade from your food processor and swap it for the slicer attachment. (If you don’t have a food processor, you can thinly slice the Brussels sprouts by hand.) Chop the tough ends off the Brussels sprouts and discard. Feed the Brussels sprouts through the food processor and set aside.
- Place the farro in a mesh strainer and rinse thoroughly. Combine the farro with three cups of water in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until farro is chewy, yet tender – about 20 minutes. You’ll want to test the farro as it cooks (like you would with pasta) to ensure the right texture. When the farro is done, drain any excess water and set it aside to cool.
- While the farro cooks, roast the Brussels sprouts. Divide the sliced sprouts between two baking sheets along with the coconut oil, garlic, salt, and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast the Brussels sprouts for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring halfway through, until browned and crispy on the edges. When the sprouts have crisped to your liking, remove them from the oven and set aside to cool on the baking sheets.
- Meanwhile, whisk the dressing together. Combine the mustard, miso paste, lemon juice, coconut oil, maple syrup, and water in a bowl. Whisk to combine. Add more miso for a saltier flavor, maple syrup for sweetness, or lemon juice to make the flavor pop. It may not seem like a lot of dressing, but a little bit goes a long way with this salad!
- Combine the cooked farro and roasted Brussels sprouts in a large serving bowl. Drizzle with the miso mustard dressing and toss to coat. Enjoy warm or at room temperature.