I’m a huge cabbage fan...I’m also a huge Buffalo Bills fan, but for now let’s just focus on the cabbage. There is no need to get into a heated football debate until at least August.
Once you start looking at cabbage as more than just a main ingredient in sauerkraut or coleslaw, you will start to see how versatile it can really be.
Brussels sprouts are in essence tiny little cabbages. As much as I like them sautéed with salsa verde or baked into a tart, I love the texture and freshness of them raw.
In this salad the raw Brussels sprouts are folded into hot and chewy wild rice, letting them wilt ever so slightly, making them a bit softer but maintaining their crunchy essence.
Mix in sautéed Halloumi cheese, blueberries and a maple vinaigrette and you have a delicious salad that not only has deep flavor but also incredible TEXTURE!
Chewy wild rice, juicy blueberries, crunchy Brussels sprouts and crispy melted cheese make this salad truly dinner party worthy. Top with slices of pork tenderloin, drop the fork and walk away.
Brussels Sprouts with Wild Rice Salad + Sliced Pork
1 pound Brussels sprouts
1 ½ cups wild rice
4 ½ cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 pound pork tenderloin
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon oil
8 ounces halloumi cheese, cut to ½ inch pieces
Balsamic maple vinaigrette (recipe below)
8 ounces blueberries
- Chop the top 2/3 of the Brussels sprouts widthwise into 1/8 inch strips, discarding the root end, you should have about 6 cups of shredded brussels sprouts lightly packed. Place brussels sprouts in a large bowl and set aside.
- Rinse the wild rice in cold water. Add the rice and stock to a small saucepan and bring to a simmer, reduce heat to medium low, cover and cook for 45 minutes, until the rice slightly bursts open and is tender while still firm. Drain off any excess liquid from the pan. While the rice is cooking, prepare dressing (recipe included below).
- Once the rice has cooked about 20 minutes, start preparing the pork tenderloin. Heat the oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle the pork with ¼ teaspoon salt and the pepper and cook until brown on both sides and just cooked through, about 8 minutes per side. Remove the pork from pan (leave pan on), let rest 2-3 minutes.
- While the pork is resting, add the cheese to the pan, stirring frequently; cook until brown on most sides, 2-3 minutes.
- When rice is cooked add the hot rice to the Brussels sprouts and ½ teaspoon salt , stir to combine. Add half the vinaigrette, blueberries and cheese; continuing to add more dressing until you get your desired amount. Top the salad with sliced pork and drizzle the pork with extra dressing if desired.
Balsamic Maple Vinaigrette
Makes 1 cup
½ cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon maple syrup
¾ cup olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon pepper
- In small bowl whisk together all ingredients until well combined.
- Cook the cheese in a separate pan from the pork and add the pork to whatever servings you like leaving the others in veggie heaven. I also love to add a fried egg to this dish or a little browned extra firm tofu if I'm going vegetarian with this meal.
Keep it Simple:
- My favorite cheese to cook up is Halloumi, it’s briny and bright, but it costs a pretty penny, many stores also sell a cheese with the name “grilling cheese” these cheese are similar and at a much better price. Can’t fine either? Skip cooking the cheese and mix in fresh chunks of feta or mozzarella.
- You have a couple things in this recipe that need to come together all at the same time. But let’s face it, that doesn’t always happen. If your pork is done first cover it was some tin foil and let it sit under its blanket. If the rice is done first simply cover it and let it sit, it’s a hearty grain and won’t get mushy easily.
- The salad comes out slightly warm, almost room temp. It is delicious cold or at room temp.