I’ve been to Jonathan Waxman’s restaurant, Barbuto a few times, but I never saw this dish on his menu. There was plenty of other things to order, including the roasted chicken, which is usually a menu throw-away, but not here. The Brussels Sprout salad was apparently featured in an old issue of Gourmet magazine back in 2005. Luckily epicurious archives their old recipes, allowing me to stumble across it on pinterest.
This salad is quite easy to make if you have a mandoline slicer. If you are in the market for one, don’t waste your time with the expensive ones from oxo and Benriner Japanese Mandoline Slicer. You’ll see in the note below, a food processor could also work. Since I was serving this salad as a meal and not as a side salad or appetizer, I added a fried egg and a slice of bacon bread from Zingerman’s.
After making the salad and adding the oil and lemon, massage the salad a little bit, allowing everything to come together. Let it sit about 5-10 minutes before serving so the Brussels have time to take on the dressing. You also need a healthy amount of fresh ground black pepper. You could add a little lemon zest as well.
Recipe from Epicurious (Jonathan Waxman)
Serves 6 as a side salad
2-4 as more of a full size salad.
1 1/2 lb Brussels sprouts (preferably on the stalk), any discolored leaves discarded and stems left intact
1 cup walnuts (3 1/2 oz), lightly toasted
2 tablespoons finely grated Pecorino Romano, or to taste (I added more)
1/4 cup olive oil
Juice of one large lemon, ~4-5 tablespoons
Holding each Brussels sprout by stem end, cut into very thin slices using slicer. Toss in a bowl to separate layers.**
Lightly crush walnuts with your hands and add to Brussels sprouts along with cheese, oil, and lemon juice, then toss to combine. Season with pepper.
Serve as a side, appetizer or as a lunch salad with a fried or poached egg and a piece of toast.
*Toast walnuts before cutting Brussel Sprouts so they cool. They can be toasted 1 day ahead and kept in an airtight container at room temperature. Brussels sprouts can be sliced 3 hours ahead and chilled, covered. Toss with remaining ingredients just before serving.
**This is achieved most easily with a mandolin. Adjust thickness to a very narrow setting, testing first that you get thinly shaved slices. You could also use a food processor to shred the sprouts, just be sure to cut off the stem first.