Tag Archives: Olive oil

Warm Brussels Sprouts Salad with Cranberries and Sunflower Seeds

Warm Brussels Sprout Salad

Warm Brussels Sprout Salad

I know we’re still a few months from Brussels Sprout season but I can’t help myself! Despite trying to eat what’s in season most of the time, I go out of my way to eat Brussels sprouts year round.  I may have hated them as kid (me and everybody else) but as an adult, they are one of my favorite veggies! Roasted, pan fried, steamed – I don’t care! I think they are fab!  This is one of my favorite ways to make them.  It’s super fast (the thing that takes the most time is trimming the sprouts) and simple to make.  Plus, you don’t even need to be much of a cook to pull this one off.

As usual, with most of the food I make, this recipe is a loose guide – if you don’t have cranberries or sunflower seeds, skip them or substitute raisins, chopped dried apricots, fresh blueberries, pumpkin seeds, chopped cashews or hemp seeds.  If you don’t have lemon, use fresh lime juice/lime zest or even vinegar.  It’s no big deal.  The main reason they’re in this salad is to add some additional texture and take some of the bite out of the sprouts.

Not only do they taste amazing, but Brussels sprouts are crazy good for you! They’re an amazing source of vitamin K and vitamin C, and a pretty good source of folate, potassium, B Vitamins (there’s some B1, B2, B3 and B6 in there), fiber and choline.   Try this salad next time you’re looking at sprouts and wondering what to do with them.

4 cups Brussels sprouts, base trimmed, loose / damaged leaves removed
1 tbsp olive oil, butter or melted coconut oil
1/2 cup dried organic cranberries
1/2 cup organic raw sunflower seeds
1 lemon, juiced & zest reserved
1.5 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil (I’m a fan of California Olive Ranch these days)
sea salt and black pepper to taste

photo 1c copy
After trimming your Brussels sprouts, slice each one 3 or 4 times (so it looks like somewhat shredded cabbage when you are done).  Heat the olive oil (not extra virgin) in a 3 or 4qt pan over medium heat.  When it’s hot, add the sliced/shredded sprouts and saute for about 5 – 7 minutes (or until your desired doneness), stirring occasionally. I like to saute them just until some pieces begin to brown and get crispy but the rest are still pretty firm.

Take them off the heat and toss with lemon juice, lemon zest and the extra virgin olive oil.  Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and dress with the cranberries and sunflower seeds. Serve warm or at room temperature.  This is a great salad to bring to cookouts when sprouts are in season in late summer!

Makes 4 hearty servings.  Make this a well balanced meal by adding grilled chicken or cannellini beans on top.

Day 26 – Start Your Day with a Healthy Breakfast

Savory steel cut oats are a great way to clear out the excess from the holidays.

Savory steel cut oats are a great way to clear out the excess from the holidays.

Hope those of you who celebrate Christmas had a great day yesterday! With so much yummy food around, I’m sure most of us over indulged a little!  My cure for a heavy day of eating is to start the next day with a healthy breakfast so your tip for Day 26 of 31 Days of Healthy Ways to Enjoy the Holidays More is to have a healthy breakfast!

One of my favorite breakfasts is steel cut oats.  Steel cut oats are high in insoluble fiber, which keeps your digestive system moving and they also have quite a bit of soluble fiber, which will keep you full all morning long (so you’re less likely to reach for leftover sugar cookies or pie).

I know most folks eat their oats either plain or with fruit and some sort of sweetener (maple syrup, honey etc) but I’m not a huge fan of sweets in the morning.  I’ll eat them that way occasionally but one of my favorite ways to prepare them is with some thinly cut zucchini and carrots, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt.  I know it sounds weird but it’s so good!

Steel cut oats take a while to make so I like to make a big batch at night and then reheat in the morning.  You can put portions in individual containers and bring them to work (but hopefully you’re off today!).

Savory Steel Cut Oats
Makes 5 servings

  • 1.5 cups steel cut oats (use certified gluten free oats if gluten is a concern for you)
  • 4.5 cups of water
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • lots of freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 medium sized zucchini, julienned
  • 1 large carrot, peeled, diced or julienned

Bring water to boil in a medium sized sauce pan, stir in oats.  Let the oats return to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low.  Let oats cook, stirring every so often so that they don’t stick to the pan.  After 15 – 20 minutes of cooking time, toss in your carrot and zucchini if you want them cooked (you can also top the oats with the vegetables, raw).  Let oats cook for another 10 minutes or until it reaches the desired consistency, again stirring to prevent sticking.  Turn off heat and serve.  Top each portion with the vegetables if you didn’t cook them, a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of sea salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper. Yum!

Optional:  If you eat dairy, try this with a shaving of fresh parmesan reggiano cheese.  It’s also delicious with a fried egg on top.