It usually has to be really cold for me to properly appreciate Brussels sprouts. And it's really cold right now in the Pacific Northwest. Coldest it's been in three years. So cold, the market manager closed the Hillsdale Market in Portland last Sunday. They do get wind gusts there.
But they didn't close the U-District market and on Saturday I bundled up and went looking for some sprouts.
I wasn't disappointed. Well maybe a little because it was so cold my hands froze, but when I came home, everyone was happy, even my Cooking Assistant.
I looked for rice-Brussels spouts casserole online and couldn't find exactly what I was looking for. So I created what I imagined and figured I could just add the cooked sprouts to the rice when I was done.
I did find these crispy lemon roasted Brussels sprouts. But the recipe was too simple and it was something I'd normally do. I also found this one for smoky shredded sprouts, but all that shredding seemed like too much work, especially when I had gotten mostly small sprouts, which I think are more tender than the big one. I liked the idea of smoked paprika, but I also imagined a mustard flavor and maybe some balsamic vinegar or a berry wine.
When buying at the market be sure to check all vendors to see which sprouts look the best and which ones fit into your budget.
Last Saturday the offered evergreens, ball ornaments and ribbons to make swags. I love the color and glitter of the season! And who doesn't like the scent of evergreen trees?
I got the shiitaki mushrooms from Sno-Valley.
And I had some tayberry wine from Rockridge Orchards.
Use your own local favorites.
Some people grow them here, but bringing lemons inside when it's so cold doesn't appeal to me.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Shiitake Mushrooms and Mustard-Lemon Vinaigrette
This is a great all-round side dish that can go with most any main dish.
Juice of 1 Meyer lemon, (about 1/4 cup juice)
Zest of 1 Meyer lemon
1 teaspoon spicy Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon sugar or agave nectar
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Smoked sea salt to taste
1 to 1 1/2 medium-size Brussels sprouts, rinsed, ends trimmed
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon berry wine (I like Rockridge Orchards)
6 ounces shiitaki mushrooms, sliced
1 or 2 shallots, small dice
1. Combine lemon juice, zest, mustard, sugar, black pepper and smoked sea salt. Set aside.
2. Preheat oven to 500F and place baking rack in the lower part of the oven.
3. Place Brussels sprouts in a baking dish and toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon berry wine. Cover and roast for 15 minutes or until the sprouts are fork-tender. Don't remove them too soon or they may be tough. While sprouts cook, heat a heavy skillet over medium heat and cook mushrooms.
4. Dry-fry shiitaki mushrooms until the soften. Add shallots and 1 tablespoon oil. Stir and cook until shallots and mushrooms are soft. Remove sprouts from the oven.
5. Combine Brussels sprouts, mushrooms and shallots and stir in the lemon-mustard vinaigrette.