I have to admit, I haven’t made many winter salads. It seems I’ve been a slave to the summery green salad all year long for too long. I realized this once I made Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Wild Rice Salad, and it won me over. The Sunday Supper bloggers have been experimenting with winter salads all week. We’ve got more than 50 recipes to share. (Check them out at the end of the post.)
Winter salads are typified by grains, roasted veggies, nuts and seeds and dried fruits. And citrus. And winter squash. And beans. And lentils. Mostly they are dressed with a vinaigrette fueled by all sorts of flavors. The dressing brings brightness to the earthy flavors of the salad, especially when fresh squeezed lemon is in the mix.
So, this salad. I am a fan of roasted Brussels sprouts and while the wee cabbage lookalikes mellow and go soft in the oven, the wild rice simmers on the stove. True wild rice is not rice at all, but the seeds of water grass. In the U.S., wild rice is grown largely in Minnesota and California. I used a wild rice blend for this recipe, that included some brown rice. It worked well, but be warned that a blend or a true wild rice takes about 45 minutes to cook. (There are quick versions but I prefer the long-cooking varieties. They have more flavor and chew. Think about the difference between instant oatmeal and steel-cut.)
I like crunch in my salads, so I added diced celery and pecans. The different textures bring more interest. I had some fun with the vinaigrette (I know, my idea of fun is goofy) by whisking in pure maple syrup. Just a tinge makes a difference. More sweetness comes from dried cranberries.
I served my salad at room temperature with roasted chicken. It was colder than I would have wanted because it had sat out for a while. It was a chilly day in Florida. Honest. It would be best warm. I toted it to work the next day topped with pieces of leftover chicken. A zap in the microwave, and everyone was jealous.
- 1 cup uncooked wild rice
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts washed and halved
- 3 large whole garlic cloves unpeeled
- 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon coarse salt
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup diced celery
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans
- ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- Zest of ½ lemon
- 5 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon real maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon coarse salt
- Juice of ½ lemon
Cook wild rice according to package instructions. This will take about 45 minutes.
While the wild rice is cooking, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place prepared Brussels sprouts and unpeeled garlic cloves on a baking sheet with a lip. Coat evenly with 2 tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Roast for about 20 to 25 minutes, stirring and flipping midway though cooking.
To prepare the vinaigrette, whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Dijon, maple syrup black pepper and salt, and lemon. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, toss together the cooked wild rice, Brussels sprouts, smashed cooked garlic (peeled), cranberries, celery, pecans and lemon zest. Stir in vinaigrette to taste (you may have some left over.) Toss to combine. Top with Parmesan cheese. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Join us at 7 p.m. ET tonight for our weekly live Twitter party. We will be talking about winter salads and the discoveries made in Sunday Supper kitchens across the land. The tastemakers came up with more than 50 salad recipes using the best ingredients of the season. Here they are:
#SundaySupper Winter Salads
- Amish Ham Salad from Cosmopolitan Cornbread
- Arugula, Butternut & White Bean Salad with Maple Vinaigrette from Pook’s Pantry
- Arugula Salad with Maple Vinaigrette from Cooking Chat
- Beet Terrine from Jane’s Adventures in Dinner
- Blood Orange and Salmon Salad with Blood Orange Vinaigrette from La Bella Vita Cucina
- Blood Orange, Beet, and Apple Salad with Goat Cheese and Citrus Honey Vinaigrette from Renee’s Kitchen Adventures
- Blue Cheese and Pear Salad from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Breakfast Salad from Our Good Life
- Brussels Sprouts Salad with White Bean Dressing and Pecan Crisps from Beauty and the Beets
- Chill Chasing Matchstick Vegetable Pasta Salad from Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Chopped Salad with Roasted Root Vegetables and Bacon from MyGourmetConnection
- Citrus Salad from A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Cobb Salad from Palatable Pastime
- Colorful Veggie Filled Quinoa with a Ginger-Lemon Dressing from Positively Stacy
- Crunchy Beet & Arugula Salad from The Crumby Cupcake
- Escarole and Roasted Broccoli Salad with Anchovy Dressing from The Texan New Yorker
- Farro Salad with Roasted Squash, Radicchio and Lemon-Tahini Dressing from Caroline’s Cooking
- Grilled Chicken Salad from Real Food Real Deals
- Hot German Hot Noodle Salad from Seduction in the Kitchen
- Kale Salad with Lemony Tahini Dressing from My Life Cookbook
- Lemony Couscous Lentil Salad from Magnolia Days
- Low-Carb Spinach Breakfast Salad from Life Tastes Good
- Mandarin Tossed Salad from Meal Planning Magic
- Orange and Walnut Baby Spinach Salad w/ Quinoa and Citrus Vinaigrette from The Freshman Cook
- Quinoa Salad with Apples, Pecans and Dried Cranberries from The Chef Next Door
- Radicchio Pear Walnut Salad from The Bitter Side of Sweet
- Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Butternut Squash Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing from Cupcakes and Kale Chips
- Roasted Butternut Squash Pearl Couscous Salad from Mysavoryspoon
- Roasted Savoy Cabbage Slaw with Spicy Bacon Dressing from Food Lust People Love
- Roasted Squash and Cabbage Salad with Crispy Chick Peas from Monica’s Table
- Shredded Beet Salad from Wholistic Woman
- Simple Arugula, Fennel and Leek Salad with Citrus from Simply Healthy Family
- Simple Spinach Cobb Salad With Lardons from And She Cooks
- Spinach Citrus Salad with Grapefruit Vinaigrette from From Gate to Plate
- Warm Balsamic Steak Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing from Momma’s Meals
- Warm Cabbage Salad with Bacon and Goat Cheese from Nik Snacks
- Warm Cauliflower Spinach Salad with Pancetta from Taste and See
- Warm Potato and Broccoli Buffalo Salad from Sweet Mornings
- Warm Potato Salad with Arugula, Bacon and Brown Butter from Bobbi’s Kozy Kitchen
- Warm Steak Tomato and Mozzarella Salad from Family Foodie
- Wilted Lettuce Salad from Confessions of a Cooking Diva
- Winter BLT Panzanella Salad from Hardly a Goddess
- Winter Citrus and Endive Salad from An Appealing Plan
- Winter Fruit Salad from Pies and Plots
- Winter Kale and Wild Rice Salad from Moore or Less Cooking
- Winter Salad with Blood Orange Vinaigrette from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Winter Salad with Fennel, Apple, Goat Cheese and Radishes from Delaware Girl Eats
- Winter Squash Quinoa Salad from Kitchen Gidget
Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Wild Rice Salad plus more Winter Salad Recipes #SundaySupper from Sunday Supper Movement
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