Something Different
Week of: March 5, 2012
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Brussels Sprouts Make an Elegant Slaw

By Dana Jacobi
for the American Institute for Cancer Research

In winter, I prefer full-bodied salads rather than a plate of delicate lettuces. Slaw is a particular favorite. Having already made kale slaw and cabbage slaws of every color, from green (green cabbage, Napa cabbage, Korean radish and Granny Smith apple) to confetti-bright (green cabbage, shredded carrot, yellow peppers, red onion and Italian parsley) to red-on-red (red cabbage, red onion, shredded beets, and dried cherries), I decided to use Brussels sprouts instead of cabbage.

Starting with finely shredded Brussels sprouts, I then added chopped apple and dried cranberries and tossed in toasted walnuts. Combining lots of lemon juice with a splash of oil made a refreshing, tangy dressing. After sitting for a couple of hours, the wilting, tenderizing effects of salt plus acid in the citrus turned this slaw into a lusty yet elegant, flavorful way to enjoy raw vegetables. Another pleasure was not being stuck with the other half of a cabbage the size of a bowling ball. Plus Brussels sprouts make it easy to control how much slaw you end up with, while most cabbage recipes seem to produce enough to feed a community gathering.

I love buying Brussels sprouts at the local farmers markets' through the winter, either loose or still on the stalk. Yet I have never really asked a farmer to explain the relationship between sprouts and full-size cabbages. Turns out that although Brussels sprouts look like baby cabbages, they are not. Growing in gracefully swirling rows around a thick two- to three-foot high stalk, they are actually a cruciferous relation that rarely grows to measure more than 2 inches across.

Brussels Sprout Slaw with Cranberries and Walnuts

Brussels Sprout Slaw with Cranberries and Walnuts

  • 3/4 lb. Brussels sprouts
  • 1 Fuji or Gala apple, peeled, cored and finely chopped
  • 2/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/8 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1/3 cup fresh Meyer lemon juice (see Notes)
  • 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

Trim bottom from sprouts and remove any loose or bruised leaves. Place shredding disc or fine slicing disc in food processor, and using feeder tube, gradually shred Brussels sprouts; there will be about 4 1/2 cups (see Notes). Transfer shredded sprouts to mixing bowl.

Add apple, cranberries, walnuts, salt, pepper and lemon juice and stir with a fork for 1 minute to combine well. Add oil and stir well. Cover and refrigerate slaw for 3 hours to overnight. Re-stir before serving. This slaw is best served within 24 hours.


  • If Meyer lemons are not available, use 1/4 cup regular fresh lemon juice.
  • If your food processor does not have a shredding disc, quarter Brussels sprouts vertically and place in food processor fitted with a chopping blade. Pulse until sprouts are finely chopped, stopping several times to scrape down bowl. Take care not to leave big chunks or to turn sprouts into mush.

Makes 8 servings.

Per 1/2 cup serving:120 calories, 7 g fat (1 g sat fat), 16 g carbohydrates,
3 g protein, 3 g fiber, 130 mg sodium.

Something Different is written by Dana Jacobi, author of 12 Best Foods Cookbook and contributor to AICR’s New American Plate Cookbook: Recipes for a Healthy Weight and a Healthy Life.

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