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Unusual combination adds up to flavorful winter salad

Recipe: Bejeweled Brussels sprouts slaw with mandarins

Salad with Brussel sprouts, mandarin oranges and pomegranate arils
How pretty is this Brussels sprouts slaw? Easy
to make, too. (Photos: Debbie Arrington)




With good-tasting tomatoes in short supply, winter salads need to be creative.

This simple slaw is delicious with a variety of textures, flavors and colors, thanks to an unusual combination of featured ingredients – raw Brussels sprouts, mandarins, pomegranates and raisins.

Adding crunch as well as sweetness, the pomegranate arils (the seed sacs) look like little rubies in this flavorful slaw. If you use bottled dressing, this winter salad goes together in a snap.

Bejeweled Brussels sprouts slaw with mandarins
Makes 4 servings

Ingredients before salad is made
Winter salads can be as colorful as summer ones with these
fresh ingredients.

Ingredients:

1 cup Brussels sprouts (about 12), thinly cut or shaved

3 mandarins, peeled and separated into segments

¼ cup pomegranate arils

¼ cup raisins

2 to 3 tablespoons creamy French dressing (see below)

Instructions:

In a large bowl, combine thinly sliced Brussels sprouts, mandarin segments, pomegranate arils and raisins. Lightly toss to combine.

Add French dressing, lightly toss until ingredients are coated.

Serve.

Tossing salad
Toss the salad ingredients lightly in purchased or homemade
French dressing.


Note: Slaw can be made in advance and chilled, covered, before serving.

For creamy French dressing: Use your favorite bottled creamy French dressing, or make your own.

In a food processor, combine 1-1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1 teaspoon paprika, ½ teaspoon Worchestershire sauce, 1/8 teaspoon seasoning salt and 1/8 teaspoon dry mustard. Pulse once or twice to combine.

In a slow and steady stream, add 3/8 cup (3 ounces) olive oil or salad oil. Process until thickened, about 2 minutes. Store extra French dressing covered in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

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Dig In: Garden checklist for week of Jan. 29

Bundle up and get work done!

* Prune, prune, prune. Now is the time to cut back most deciduous trees and shrubs. The exceptions are spring-flowering shrubs such as lilacs.

* Now is the time to prune fruit trees, except apricot and cherry trees. Clean up leaves and debris around the trees to prevent the spread of disease.

* Prune roses, even if they’re still trying to bloom or sprouting new growth. Strip off any remaining leaves, so the bush will be able to put out new growth in early spring.

* Prune Christmas camellias (Camellia sasanqua), the early-flowering varieties, after their bloom. They don’t need much, but selective pruning can promote bushiness, upright growth and more bloom next winter. Feed with an acid-type fertilizer. But don’t feed your Japonica camellias until after they finish blooming next month. Feeding while camellias are in bloom may cause them to drop unopened buds.

* Clean up leaves and debris around your newly pruned roses and shrubs. Put down fresh mulch or bark to keep roots cozy.

* Apply horticultural oil to fruit trees to control scale, mites and aphids. Oils need 24 hours of dry weather after application to be effective.

* This is also the time to spray a copper-based oil to peach and nectarine trees to fight leaf curl. Avoid spraying on windy days.

* Divide daylilies, Shasta daisies and other perennials.

* Cut back and divide chrysanthemums.

* Plant bare-root roses, trees and shrubs.

* Transplant pansies, violas, calendulas, English daisies, snapdragons and fairy primroses.

* In the vegetable garden, plant fava beans, head lettuce, mustard, onion sets, radicchio and radishes.

* Plant bare-root asparagus and root divisions of rhubarb.

* In the bulb department, plant callas, anemones, ranunculus and gladiolus for bloom from late spring into summer.

* Plant blooming azaleas, camellias and rhododendrons. If you’re shopping for these beautiful landscape plants, you can now find them in full flower at local nurseries.

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