Try to think about all the exciting vegetable and citrus (or fruit) combinations that capture my imagination and taste buds, this brussels sprouts and pomelo salad tops the list. Brussels sprouts are in a class all its own. Oranges and grapefruits are almost too mundane, in comparison to pomelos. (If you can’t find pomelo, grapefruit can be substituted. Pomelos are sweeter and sharper, add less lemon juice if you use grapefruits.) Vegetables and fruits make good partners!
Reviewing all the previous posts, I see a cauliflower and grapes salad that I really adore. There are also fennel and pear. Tomatoes and pomegranate seeds. The order they are listed is not indicative of their appeal. I have made each of these dishes more than a few times. Each and everyone of these pairings works remarkably well. What is your favorite combination of vegetables and fruits? I’m curious.
What a creative and flavorful commingling of roasted brussels sprouts and sweetened pomelo? Nuttiness of the roasted brussels sprouts shines and delights. And none of bitterness remains. Not from the sprouts or the pomelo.
This dish disappeared faster than any salads or vegetables I put on the table. Another amazing and genius recipe from Ottolenghi’s Plenty More. This dish will be joining other IHCC home cooks at our potluck gathering in February. There are always something unexpected and exciting on the offer. Do check them out.
The most time-consuming step in preparing this salad is peeling the pomelo, getting rid of the skin and membrane, and breaking the flesh into bite-size pieces. But it is worth the effort. Then the pomelo segments are marinaded in a syrup, that is combined with sugar, water, cinnamon, star anise and lemon juice, for an hour. I don’t mind the tangy and slightly bitter flavor of fresh pomelo. Next time, I may just bypass the step with the marinade and the sugar, making it a healthier salad.
What I would not change is roasting the brussels sprouts. As you know, there are brussels sprouts lovers and haters. They are equally adamant about their preferences. My family happens to love brussels sprouts. I’ve found roasting them to be the best way to bring out the nutty flavor of brussels sprouts. Ottolenghi’s recipe calls for blanching the sprouts, together with the shallots, for two minutes, straining and drying them, and finally roasting them in a 425°F oven for about 20 minutes. This two-step process makes for a moist and crispy brussels sprouts, as well as for the shallots. Highly recommended.
The dressing is a simple mixture of the leftover pomelo marinade juice, lemon juice and seasoning. I can see adding a few drops of fish sauce to give the salad extra depth and saltiness. You are reminded (by Ottolenghi) not to throw out the leftover sugar syrup. It adds a unique flavor to fruit salads, smoothies or sauces. Yum!
|Cinnamon sticks and star anise go into the pomelo marinade|
|Brussels sprouts & shallots are blanched and then roasted|