This salad is one of my absolute favorite summer side dishes. I know the combination might sound a bit odd but these elements together are really fabulous. It's so flavorful and fresh. I could seriously eat it every day and not get tired of it. I make this as a side dish for everything from BBQ to roasted chicken and sometimes as a stand alone lunch with some crusty bread. It's a salad that can really go with almost anything. I've also used zucchini instead of or in addition to the green beans here and there when I have had it on hand. I use it raw and diced into small cubes. I am a big fan of raw or very slightly cooked fresh vegetables in salads such as this.
I like to make this salad at least a couple hours ahead of the time I want to serve it to allow the vinaigrette to really permeate the vegetables and to soften up the Brussels sprout leaves just a little bit. I also really love to drizzle just a tiny bit of balsamic over the salad right before I serve it. But if you aren't a fan of balsamic, you could totally leave it off and it's still delicious.
What kinds of vegetables to you like to mix up in a salad such as this? Any unusual combinations that you've found that work together in an amazing way?
Green Bean, Brussels Sprout and Tomato Salad with Goat Cheese
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound fresh green beans, lightly blanched and cut into bite sized pieces
1/2 pound raw Brussels sprouts, leaves separated and tough ends removed
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and roughly chopped
1 cup goat cheese, crumbled
1 recipe Basic Vinaigrette (recipe below)
Good quality aged balsamic vinegar (optional)
1: Put a large pot of salted (1 teaspoon) water on to boil over high heat.
2: While the water is heating, trim and cut green beans into bite sized pieces, about 1 inch long.
3: When the water is to a strong boil, blanch the green beans for about 1 minute. Until they are just slightly cooked but still firm and have a bite.
4: Drain green beans and shock in cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain and set aside.
5: Cut the tough ends off the Brussels sprouts and separate into leaves. Cutting the sprouts in half before separating helps this go a bit faster, or if you like you can shred the sprouts on a mandolin. Set aside.
6: Seed the tomatoes so that you have nothing left but the meat. Discard the seeds and liquid. Roughly chop the tomatoes.
7: Combine the beans, Brussels sprouts and tomato in a large bowl and toss with the prepared vinaigrette. Cover and refrigerate for a couple hours before serving for best results.
8: Just before serving, top individual portions with a handful of crumbled goat cheese and a drizzle of balsamic, if you like.
Makes 4 large servings.
3/4 cup good olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 shallot, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1: Combine olive oil, red wine vinegar, Dijon mustard and shallot in a screw top jar. (You could also whisk in a bowl)
2: Shake jar well.
3: Taste and add salt and pepper to your liking.
Makes about 1 cup.