October 16, 2016 9

Sautéed Salt + Vinegar Brussels Sprout Leaves + scenes from las vegas!

Vegan, gluten-free sautéed brussels sprout leaves.

Sautéed Salt + Vinegar Brussels Sprout Leaves | Tangy and peppery, sautéed salt and vinegar brussels sprout leaves done on the stovetop in under five minutes. Brussels sprouts made vegan and gluten-free.
Las Vegas is weird. I’ve somehow managed to spend almost zero time there except for that one time I lost my wallet pulling slots in the airport on a layover. Last week my husband attended a nerdy aviation convention, so I tagged along. I spent half my time trying to block out the excess noise/lights/stimuli, and the other half searching for healthy-ish foods and lifestyle environments.

Vegas feels synthetic. Commercial. Fake. Generic. I woke up on day two exhausted from the persistent stimulus. My anxiety felt high. The air felt heavy. I pulled back the curtains, and peeked out the windows. I saw the desert in the distance. There had to be more to this town than this superficial shell.

I jumped in an Uber and headed off the strip. I landed downtown at a cafe, and made myself at home by ordering a dirty chai almond milk latte. Normality started to settle. I ordered an arepa with sautéed veg. And, I ordered the brussels sprouts.

The arepa was solid. The brussels sprouts however, were the best I’ve ever had. Like ever. A very simple preparation of brussels sprout leaves separated, and then sautéed like greens. Tossed in oil and vinegar and sprinkled with a heavy pinch of pepper, grated parmesan cheese and crushed red pepper flakes. I wasn’t expecting it. I wasn’t expecting this beautiful, fresh dish of food at a random cafe in the middle of the desert in a town seemingly void of feelings.

I stopped judging. They got me. I was smitten with these brussels. This cafe. The realness and grit I felt off the strip. If I ever go back to Vegas, it will be to experience the real city. And hike those surrounding godly desert mountains.

Sautéed Salt + Vinegar Brussels Sprout Leaves | Tangy and peppery, sautéed salt and vinegar brussels sprout leaves done on the stovetop in under five minutes. Brussels sprouts made vegan and gluten-free.Sautéed Salt + Vinegar Brussels Sprout Leaves | Tangy and peppery, sautéed salt and vinegar brussels sprout leaves done on the stovetop in under five minutes. Brussels sprouts made vegan and gluten-free.Sautéed Salt + Vinegar Brussels Sprout Leaves | Tangy and peppery, sautéed salt and vinegar brussels sprout leaves done on the stovetop in under five minutes. Brussels sprouts made vegan and gluten-free.

Here are my tips/recommendations to navigate Las Vegas like a semi-sane person.

Escape the sounds and lights, and have a drink at Rhumbar. It’s one of the only places on the strip where you can be outside, and breathe in some fresh and somewhat secluded air. Order a beer or Bloody Mary, everything else on the cocktail menu is a little too sweet. Bonus points if you go early.

Get celiac safe fries {and fried chicken, if that’s your thing} at Brooklyn Bowl. They don’t mess around there. Totally doing it right with a dedicated fryer. Hip, hip! Actual gluten-free fries you guys!

Soothe your overstimulated self with a bowl of pasta at Mario Batali’s Otto Pizzeria. If you can stomach the ridiculous environment of fake sunny sky ceilings and carnival street performers, his bowl of gluten-free rigatoni is super legit.

Enjoy breakfast, brunch, lunch, cocktails and/or dinner at Mon Ami Gabi. A somewhat generic, yet gluten-free friendly bistro. It’s nothing amazing, but it’s a solid and safe choice. And, they have a patio with pretty views of the fountain, so.

Balance your body’s pH with some liquid greens and micronutrients. With or without booze {no judgement, it’s Vegas!} at The Juice Standard located inside The Cosmopolitan hotel.

Treat yourself to a night of pure magic at Rose. Rabbit. Lie. {also inside The Cosmopolitan}. If I could recommend one place to eat dinner it would be here. Dreamy ambiance. Strange nostalgia. Live music. Secret rooms. Elevated food, with plenty of veg and gluten-free options. And, a staff that makes you feel extra special. I’ll be dreaming about this place for a long time.

Get off the strip. Head downtown to Makers & Finders. They have a grip of naturally gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian options. Cozy up to the bar. Their staff is friendly, and helpful. Order an arepa. And, definitely order the brussels sprouts.

Las Vegas, Nevada | Scenes and tips on how to eat healthy, gluten-free and vegetarian in Las Vegas.Las Vegas, Nevada | Scenes and tips on how to eat healthy, gluten-free and vegetarian in Las Vegas.Las Vegas, Nevada | Scenes and tips on how to eat healthy, gluten-free and vegetarian in Las Vegas.Las Vegas, Nevada | Scenes and tips on how to eat healthy, gluten-free and vegetarian in Las Vegas.Las Vegas, Nevada | Scenes and tips on how to eat healthy, gluten-free and vegetarian in Las Vegas.

Sautéed Salt + Vinegar Brussels Sprout Leaves
 
prep time
make time
total time
 
Big, beautiful, leafy brussels sprouts work best here. The bigger the better. If you don't have apple cider vinegar, white or red will work. I like a lot of black pepper, I think it gives the salt and vinegar flavor an earthy balance - adjust accordingly.
By:
Makes: 2 large portions
Ingredients
  • 1 bunch of brussels sprouts {approximately 6 cups whole}
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper {see notes}
  • sea salt, to taste
  • parmesan cheese, optional
Instructions
  1. Separate the leaves of each sprout by cutting off the bottom and peeling them off one
  2. by one. Submerge the sprout leaves in a bowl of water to rinse and drain.
  3. Heat a large sauté pan over low-medium heat and pile in the wet leaves. Cover and steam
  4. for 2 minutes.
  5. Remove the lid, and turn the heat up to medium. Add in the olive oil, vinegar, and a pinch
  6. of salt and pepper. Stir and cook for 1 minute more, or until the leaves are bright green.
  7. Season with more salt and pepper if needed, and a sprinkle of parmesan if desired, and
  8. serve warm.

This post is in partnership with The Cosmopolitan; all opinions are my own.

9 Responses to "Sautéed Salt + Vinegar Brussels Sprout Leaves + scenes from las vegas!"

  1. Reply

    danielle

    October 16, 2016 at 10:28 PM

    Vegas is the cheapest flight out of our regional airport, and yet I’ve never ventured. Although from time to time I’ve had my curiosities about the intense stimulus and desert heat. It’s good to know there are sanctuaries from the oddities and lights. These brussels sprouts are done SO right. A proper punch of feeling. xo

    • Reply

      Sherrie

      October 17, 2016 at 11:08 AM

      We should all go together one day. Spend a wild night on the strip. And a restorative night exploring the desert. Your words always give me all the feels, Danielle. xx!!!!

  2. Reply

    Amy | The Whole Food Rainbow

    October 17, 2016 at 5:28 AM

    What a lovely simple recipe, love it! And hearing about Las Vegas, and the sanctuaries you can root out.

    • Reply

      Sherrie

      October 17, 2016 at 11:08 AM

      It’s totally doable! In small doses, of course. xx

  3. Reply

    Bianca Phillips

    October 17, 2016 at 11:13 AM

    These sound amazing! I love brussels, and I’m always looking for new ways to cook them. I haven’t been to Vegas since I was a kid, but I’ll remember this post if I ever make it back.

  4. Reply

    robyn holland | sweetish.co

    October 17, 2016 at 5:05 PM

    I love all of your vegas recommendations. I often drive through there and don’t stop for food because it’s all too much… I really hate vegas. But! Now I have new places to explore thanks to you. Love this recipe too – it looks simple and delicious – I love a recipe that just uses the leaves of the brussel. xo

  5. Reply

    Regine Karpel

    October 19, 2016 at 10:52 AM

    Love!

  6. Reply

    Amy G

    October 19, 2016 at 11:33 AM

    I feel the *exact* same way about Vegas. I spent 7 days straight once and came home and had to throw away my suitcase. The smells linger. I can’t wait to try a new brussel sprout recipe. So glad to have found your site!

  7. Reply

    traci | Vanilla And Bean

    October 20, 2016 at 2:00 PM

    I’m in love with the BS, Sherrie!! I’ve not been to Vegas in 8 years.. the last was to specifically see Sir Elton John and his red piano (a worthwhile event!). A float down the Colorado river too, made the overwhelm of Vegas most tolerable. You nailed my thoughts exactly on Vegas. Synthetic. Stimulus overload. All of the above!! I don’t think i’ll ever go back unless there is some single event that draws me there. The surrounding desert is beautiful, rugged and much more intriguing than the lights of the strip. So happy you got away for some good food and to soothe your sore eyes. Thank you for this Sherrie.

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With Food + Love © 2016 | All photos + words belong to Sherrie Castellano -- they cannot be used or distributed without permission.