I am super excited, thrilled, pumped, enthusiastic and exhilarated(!) to be participating in a brand-new cookbook called “From Scratch: Over 40 recipes from our Culinary Nutrition Experts”.
It’s a mouth-watering and gorgeously designed compilation of recipes crafted and generously shared by some of the fall 2013 graduates of the Culinary Nutrition Expert program.
The book is offered on a “pay what you can” basis (starting at $5) or pay with a tweet (until January 15) and all proceeds go to Organics 4 Orphans, a non-profit humanitarian organization that helps support impoverished communities in Africa by teaching and sharing knowledge about organic gardening, nutritional training, natural medicine and income generation.
My original Shaved Brussels Sprouts Slaw with Maple-Spiced Dressing recipe (which I’m sharing below) is included in the From Scratch cookbook and my delicious, blood-sugar balancing raw salad adorns the cover (how exciting!)
If you’re looking for easy, nutritious and of course delicious recipes to pump up your new year and continue your healthy eating adventure, I can’t think of a better way than with this cookbook!
To tempt your palate, I’m sharing my recipe for Shaved Brussels Sprouts Slaw with Maple-Spiced Dressing with you. I was inspired by seasonal fruits and vegetables this time of year and my natural curiosity to use these in new ways, such as in a raw salad.
It’s important to cut the Brussels sprouts down to size, either shredding or slicing thinly with a food processor (with a slicer or grater attachment, which is my preference), a sharp knife or for the brave, a mandolin or box grater.
I created this recipe to be a fresh but nutritionally dense fall or winter slaw salad that would showcase many of the healing properties of diabetic friendly spices (turmeric, cinnamon and cayenne, all of which help target overall inflammation).
Cinnamon also helps balance blood sugar by making the body’s cells more receptive to insulin. I included apple cider vinegar, which has been studied for its ability to improve blood glucose levels and support weight loss.
I included fresh pear, dried apricots and a very small amount of maple syrup to round out the bitterness that can characterize Brussels sprouts. Fresh pears are high in fibre and low on the glycemic scale, while maple syrup may also include certain components beneficial for Type 2 diabetes. I did, however, include suggestions so you can choose an alternate sweetener if you like (or omit it entirely). It was key that it also include protein and fat (almonds and high-quality oil) to help stabilize blood sugar levels.
Here’s my Shaved Brussels Sprouts Slaw with Maple-Spiced Dressing recipe:
Shaved Brussels Sprouts Slaw with Maple-Spiced Dressing
For the salad
- ½ cup raw almonds or other nut of your choice
- 1 lb . of fresh Brussels sprouts
- 1 large preferably organic, ripe pear
- ¼ cup dried apricots preferably organic
For the dressing
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- ¾ teaspoon ground turmeric
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 ½ teaspoons maple syrup or omit, honey or 2-3 drops plain, liquid stevia
- ½ teaspoon ground cayenne this dressing is noticeably spicy; you can reduce this to 1/4 teaspoon if you don’t like spicy dishes
- ¾ teaspoon Celtic or other unrefined sea salt
- 6 tablespoons high-quality olive oil or you can substitutive any oil you like, such as pumpkin seed, hemp, flax, walnut, coconut, etc. Please avoid “vegetable” oil, canola and sunflower oils though, which are high in omega-6 fatty acids, because we want to minimize these as much as possible in our diets
Place almonds in a bowl and cover with warm water to soak. Soaking our nuts and seeds helps increase their digestibility and makes it easier for our bodies to absorb their nutrients.
Wash your Brussels sprouts and trim the ends. Using a food processor, mandolin or sharp knife, slice the Brussels sprouts finely. Note: If you use a food processor, you can use either the “fine slice” or “shred” discs; I prefer the fine slice (on my machine, this seems to shave the Brussels sprouts perfectly). If you use a knife, cut the Brussels sprouts as thinly as possible and if using a mandolin, follow the same advice and be sure to watch your fingers! I haven’t tried this myself, but you could also try grating the Brussels sprouts with a box grater. If you do, let me know how it worked! Add the Brussels sprouts to a large serving bowl.
Core the pear, slice thinly and chop into 1-inch pieces. Chop the apricots into small pieces. Add the pear and the apricots to the bowl.
Drain and rinse the almonds. Roughly chop them and add them to a saucepan. Over low-medium heat, toast the almonds, stirring frequently, for 3-5 minutes or until dry and fragrant. Try not to rush this—burnt nuts are the worst! Add the toasted nuts to the serving bowl.
To make the dressing, whisk the vinegar with the spices and salt in a small bowl. Once the spices are well incorporated, add in the olive or other oil of your choosing and whisk again. I recommend this because salt and spices distribute better though vinegar or water than oil, so preparing the dressing this way helps properly season it. However, you can also just mix everything together and it’ll still taste great!
Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to combine. Because Brussels sprouts are so hardy, this salad keeps well in the fridge for several days.
I thought it might be difficult to find testers for this raw Brussels sprouts salad, but clearly I’m not the only Brussels sprouts lover in town! I hope you enjoy this winter salad recipe.
Life is a plate… Eat up!
P.S. Thinking about nutrition school? Interested in Culinary Nutrition training? Discover the Culinary Nutrition Expert program, or check out some of these sweet love notes (look for the one by yours truly!) from my fellow Culinary Nutrition Expert graduates.