Seasonal Tastes: February 2017 – Honey and Chili Brussels Sprouts over Whipped Ricotta

At a recent visit to Eataly, I tried two dishes at the vegetable restaurant that I absolutely loved.  The first was brussels sprouts in a honey chili vinaigrette; the other was fried cauliflower with olive tapenade over whipped ricotta.  Since brussels sprouts are in season right now, I decided to combine these two veggie dishes for what I’m calling a super dish.

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Toss toss toss

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First, halve 1 lb of brussels sprouts and toss them with a mixture of 1/4 c. olive oil, 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, 1.5 tbsp honey, 2 tsp chili flakes, and a sprinkle of salt.  Spread on a baking sheet and roast at 400 for 25-30 minutes (or until they’re super brown and crispy).  While the sprouts are cooking, prep your whipped ricotta.  Blend 1/2 c. part skim ricotta with 1-2 tsp lemon pepper (optional), 2 tbsp olive oil, 2 tbsp milk or half and half, and salt with an immersion blender until smooth.  Basically, you want it to be the consistency of yogurt.

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Perfect consistency
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Step 1 of plating

If you were throwing a dinner party, this would be perfect instead of a salad course.  It’s still got the health/veggie factor you want from a salad but has a “wow” presentation.  Also, it’s super easy to plate so you can get it out of the kitchen and in front of your guests quickly.

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2nd and final step of plating: pile on the sprouts – it looks kinda good when it’s a little messy

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This dish ended up being the best of both of those Eataly dishes, all rolled into one.  I mean, I know I shouldn’t begin to compare myself to the gods over at that place, but I was very pleased with how this one turned out.