Standing out from the chef crowd is no simple feat in a food centric city like Portland… of course, there’s a reason Chef Aaron Woo landed our 2013 Trailblazing Chef Award for Produce Innovation. Since 2011, Woo has been consistently raising the bar for vegan and vegetarian cooking at his Oregon eatery, Natural Selection.  In each four-course prix fixe menu served at his restaurant, Woo demonstrates a sincere dedication to boosting flavor intensity with exciting and fresh combinations of ingredients. That dedication is delectably illustrated in this Brussels Sprouts and Sunchoke Salad with Pine Nuts, Green Olives, Orange, Parmesan, and Lemon Cream. Woo claims this as one of his favorite dishes as it is infinitely adaptable according to the season and what ingredients you have on hand.

Brussels Sprouts and Sunchoke Salad pine nuts, green olives, orange, Parmesan, and lemon creamServes 4

Ingredients4 cup shaved Brussels sprouts—thinly on a mandolin2 cup baby arugula leaves, or other spicy greens2 lg. sunchokes/Jerusalem artichokes1/4 cup toasted pine nuts1 cup golden raisins1 cup apple cider vinegar1 cup green olives, pitted, coarsely chopped2 oranges1 cup freshly grated Parmesan1 cup lemon cream (recipe below)

assembly1. Bring the apple cider up to a simmer, pour over golden raisins, cover, refrigerate until cool, then strain from liquid.2. Remove the skin of the oranges with a knife. Either segment the orange, or slice crosswise into1/4” slices, then quarter the slices.3. In a mixing bowl, toss shaved Brussels sprouts, pine nuts, golden raisins, green olives, S+P.4. Using a mandolin, thinly shave the sunchokes into the mixing bowl.5. Add the lemon cream, toss gently until well incorporated. Adjust seasoning/6. Add baby arugula, toss gently, place in a mound in the center of plates.7. Add the orange segments or sliced quarters on and around the salad.8. Finally, grate fresh Parmesan over each salad before serving.

Lemon Cream

Ingredients1 Tablespoon minced fresh shallot1/2 teaspoon kosher salt1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper1Tablespoon Meyer lemon zest, finely grated3/4 cup Meyer lemon juice1/2 cup champagne vinegar1 cup EVOO1 cup heavy whipping cream

assembly1. In a blender, put shallot salt, lemon zest, and champagne vinegar. Let rest for 5 minutes.2. Add black pepper, and lemon juice. Turn blender on medium speed.3. In a steady stream, drizzle EVOO into the blender to emulsify.4. In a steady stream, pour heavy whipping cream into blender to emulsify. Once well blended, taste, and adjust seasoning. Refrigerate until use.