Chopped Brussels Sprout Salad with Chicken and Walnuts

Brussels Sprouts Salad

We’re house hunting and I need help.

But first, I’ll tell you about this salad. House lovers, scroll down.

This salad = yumyumyum. I have always loved thinly sliced Brussels sprouts in salads (I slice mine on a mandoline – works like a veggie cutting charm) and I am a sucker for chopped salads with lots of texture, like that Chopped Thai Chicken Salad. We have juicy chicken, toasted walnuts, and shredded Parmesan going on in this bowl with the crunchy greens, plus the most creamy dreamy wonderful dressing ev-er made from fresh orange juice, honey, and sauteed onions. Oy. I superlike it.

Guess what Bjork said when I sent this to work with him? And yes, maybe I do pack his lunches because maybe I have a compulsion to eat every single leftover morsel ever, and he has no idea what’s in the fridge, so what? He said this: THAT SALAD IS REALLY GOOD. And just like that I’m married to a person who likes Brussels sprouts.

Win.

Brussels Sprouts Salad

Okay, house time. We went into this process thinking that we were looking for an older, charming house in the city that had character AND lots of newer updates, including a large window-y dream kitchen, was close to parks and shops, and was within price range. And then we somehow ended up with these two as our current leads.

House #1: The Easy Happy Home

This little guy is a very practical house very close to where we currently live, featuring a super open floor plan and totally spotless rooms. It’s in a great school district, close to good friends, and within walking distance from a great park. Not makes-my-heart-pound-adorable, not in our dream city neighborhood, but nice, clean, and comfortable. I really feel like we could move into that house tomorrow and we’d be settled in by dinnertime.

Then it would be Christmas morning and I could stand in the kitchen and look over a breakfast buffet type thing into the living room (open floor plan, yeah?!) and gaze upon my husband and my future pug snuggling by the fireplace, and simultaneously flip pancakes onto my future and hypothetical children’s plates as they sit across the way at the dining room table in all their pajama cuteness. I’m not crazy about the exterior of the house and it doesn’t have a huge zing factor, but… do we even need zing? I don’t know. I can easily imagine us being very happy and comfortable there.

PS. Visualization is how I house shop. I think it’s a girl thing.

Brussels Sprout Salad

 House #2: The Charming Fixer-Upper Home

As soon as I saw it from the street, I fell in love. Then I saw the inside – the fireplace in the living room, the hardwood floors, the large master bedroom with lots of big windows, and the original 1940′s kitchen wood cabinetry with lots of detail, and fell in love deeper-ly. But guess what? It’s dirty and old and needs major updating. We would be buying the house with the intention of putting some serious money into renovating it with refinished floors, new paint, and a partial kitchen re-do.

But can I just run with this for another minute? It has absolutely undeniable old charm in things like arched door frames, a curlycue banister, a future playroom cedar attic, and a swinging door from the dining room into the kitchen. EEEP! What?! We had said we weren’t going to do a fixer-upper this time around, but we got completely sucked in by the sweet story-like details of this place. I LOVE the potential that I see when I look at this home.

It’s on a golf course, it’s within walking distance to a popular park on a lake, and it’s in a great city neighborhood with lots of other cute old houses on the block. But wait. Golf course? Is that weird? We can’t decide. It’s like literally we can see the golfers teeing off right in the backyard. But then, the view is great, and we sat on the back porch for a while tonight to test it out and we kinda liked just watching people zip around in their golf carts across the open green. It wasn’t too noisy or anything, other than the occasional ping of the golf ball. Then the police came and kicked us out for being creepers and sitting on a porch that we don’t own. Just kidding, but they probably should have.

Brussels Sprouts Salad

Will you tell me what you think? We need some help.

Especially if you’ve done the fixer-upper thing and especially if you have anything to say about the golf course. It was actually really helpful to hear from you when I posted that picture of the house with the small kitchen on Facebook way back when – you talked some sense into me, like don’t buy a kitchen that can only fit one person. Good advice. I need some peeps who can help me set my house-buying emotions straight. Yer cool, guys.

4.8 from 4 reviews
Chopped Brussels Sprout Salad with Chicken and Walnuts
Author: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup cooked chicken, cubed or shredded
  • 4 cups sliced Brussels sprouts (for me it was about 20)
  • ½ cup walnuts
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • juice of 1 orange
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Prep the salad: Prepare the chicken. Prepare the Brussels sprouts by very thinly slicing them with a mandoline. In a food processor, pulse the walnuts a few times until chopped. Place in a small skillet over medium high heat with no oil or butter and toast until golden brown, stirring or shaking constantly.
  2. Make the dressing: In the small skillet, saute the butter and onion over medium high heat until the onions are golden brown, about 5 minutes. Transfer the onions to a food processor. Add the orange juice, honey, and olive oil. Puree until smooth and creamy. Season generously with salt and pepper.
  3. Place the Brussels sprouts in the empty sauteed onion pan and place over high heat. Stir for 1-2 minutes until you can smell them and they turn bright green. Remove from heat. In a large bowl, toss the the Brussels sprouts, walnuts, chicken, and Parmesan.
  4. Toss the dressing and salad together. Serve warm or cold. If you plan to keep leftovers, keep the dressing separate.
Notes
You can also eat this salad with the raw shredded Brussels sprouts - just skip the step of sauteing them. I found that sauteing them slightly just brought out color and flavor and helped the texture soften just slightly.

Nutrition

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Comments

  1. I vote for the charmer! It might need a little TLC to fix it up but it sounds like it would fix you and Bjork perfectly :) And as a brussels sprout lover, I am obsessed with this salad. Trying this recipe as soon as I get my hands on some!

  2. Oh man both house sound awesome, but golf course are never any fun to live on……..
    Okay, that may just me my crazy family though! I say go with your gut and what your truly love!!

    I personally love this salad!! Brussel sprouts are so my thing and this is calling my name!

  3. I am the most indecisive and am dreading house hunting because I know I’ll never be able to make decisions!!! However, I’m not very handy and I’m impatient and I LOVE open concepts, so I might go with the first house. BUT if you just put in a little time and energy, you could totally have your dream home, so the second home is quite appealing, too! Good luck :)

    OH and I need to start chopping brussels sprouts and putting them into salads because this looks awesome!

  4. I compromised and met in the middle. We got an older charmer that was fairly update with a couple of area’s that we could look forward to updating in the future. Best of both worlds.

  5. I vote for easy to move into! My husband and I are both teachers and bought our first home six years ago. We had the same dilemma as you. I never regretted buying easier and newer, as my brother did the opposite. The problems in his house always end up ten times more expensive and extensive than he thinks (including limitless bats!). Our new house, even though it was new, still required a lot of work to make it the way we wanted it- and things always need work (like the current family of a million bees trying to take over the attic). And while my brother had romanticized how fun it would be to fix-up and remodel with his wife, it doesn’t exactly always pan out that way. :) That being said, this is your dream! Good luck and happy house hunting! And have a great start to the school year!

  6. That salad is gorgeous! And I know you guys will make the right decision about the house – both sound like great options!

  7. I love, love, love Brussels sprouts salad. The shredding really transforms it. I love the addition of chicken and your dressing looks divine. THANK YOU!

  8. House hunting?! So exciting, Linds! I vote for the fixer-upper. Nothing beats charm. But they both sound wonderful and you will make any house a home. There ARE some really cute houses in Wauwatosa, WI…just saying. Also – this salad looks delish. Miss you two. Can’t wait to hear what you choose!!

  9. If you have the time & money, I’d go for the fixer upper. You guys clearly love it. If you buy the first one, will you spend the whole time dreaming of the fixer upper and regretting not buying it? That would probably make my mind up for me.

  10. Stephanie says:

    Hi, First time posting. I found your blog last week and love it. Thanks for all these delicous recipes. Oh, and also the recommendation for the Cooking Light Superfast cookbook – oh my god that was a god send.

    Ok, I don’t know what your situation is. But if you plan to have kids within the next two years, think about how long a renovation will really take you. Because once you have kids – EVERYTHING gets put on hold for a while and then things just take a lot longer to get done when you do manage to resurface. Also, keep in mind that renovations ALWAYS take more money, and more time than you originally planned. Especially older homes. Stop watching HGTV. Seriously. They make it look too easy.

    Another point – can the fixer upper be an open-floor plan? We bought a little fixer upper with a closed off kitchen and a living room that is accessible through the dining room (ie, on the opposite side of the kitchen). I have two small kids and I wish every day that I had an open kitchen. If I knew then what I know now, I would have made an open-floor plan a must have. I don’t have a lot of time to cook, and when I can cook it is really hard because I have to run back and forth between the kitchen and the living room to make sure the kids aren’t into something they shouldn’t be into. I dream of just being able to turn my head to look at them while I’m preparing their dinners. Alas, not this house. But the next one for sure!

    Good luck. I know it’s a tough decision!

  11. This is a easy one. Don’t settle!!! I think if you buy the fisrt house you will always wonder “what if” or “should we have”. Now to the fixer uppper….I’m sure you already know, but have the house inspected to make sure that there isn’t bigger issues like water or foundation damage, is the electrical, furnace up to date, windows sealed etcetera.
    If all is well, I say go for it. You are at the perfect time in your life to do this. No children or pets. My husband and I built our house. We were the general contractors. Friends and family said, don’t do it! You will end up divorced. We hired every contractor, picked every finish, faucet, cabinet, you name it we did it. It took us 9 months and I have to say, we had the time of our life. I drove a cement truck, (I think I was a truck driver in my past life. I get a little to excited when I see big tires.)we showed up every Friday with pizza for the guys and most important, my husband and I did it together. Every nook of our house has a story. If you embrace the challenge knowing that there will be a hiccup or two along the way and stay positive you and Bjork will make great memories. Can’t wait to hear what you guys decide. :)

  12. Fixer upper! We’ve done two fixer. One we did 100% DIY and cheap. One we did right (although we were still very budget conscious). If you’re going to do it, do it right. That doesn’t mean you can’t do things yourself. Just really think about what you’re going to do and do it right, hiring out here and there. With the second house, we knew that we could either afford a house that would be a fixer upper in 5-10 years or we could go for a much cheaper house that needed a lot of work right away, but we could then afford to make it just the way we wanted. We chose #2. Let’s just say that the move from the US to Korea was tough. I miss my 73 square feet of counter space!!

    This recipe will be going on my list for the week … except with baked tofu. Thank you!

  13. 1. This dish looks amazing, and the onion vinaigrette is a must-make, delish!
    2. I think you should go for the fixer upper. Charm and old school craftsmanship are hard to come by, and it seems you and Bjork make a great team, so I think you’d enjoy the challenge of fixing it up!

  14. I feel like I’m getting a total preview of my soon-to-be house hunting life in Milwaukee! I love LOVE charming older homes (I used to live in Uptown and miss those houses), but the hubs and I have to be honest with ourselves that a) We are not handy and b) Fixing stuff around the house just isn’t our idea of a fun hobby for our free time. Where oh where is that old home that was just recently renovated but kept all its charm? lol

    Maybe ask yourself if you guys would enjoy spending time working on a house together (and have time for). If the answer is yes, it could be totally worth it!
    And that is your two cents from a stranger (but I am also a fellow lover of Brussels sprouts, so we have that going for us!)

  15. I say go with the fixer upper and get it all fixed up before those hypothetical children show up! We moved into an older home about a year ago and are still struggling to get any fixing done with three littles under foot. If you really don’t want to do anything then get the easy mover, but I think the charming old house would be good for your creative blog work. I’ve never lived on a golf course, but aren’t all the nicest houses on golf courses? I lived downstream from one at our last house (wow, that screams Wisconsin) and we got a lot of free balls, so… can’t wait to see what you decide!

  16. Wow that is a beautiful salad with lots of fantastic flavors. Can’t wait to try!

    Happy Blogging!
    Happy Valley Chow

  17. I have been adding roasted walnuts lately to everything. Thanks for giving me the inspiration.

    As for the home, we have a saying in Vietnamese: you don’t find the house, the house finds you. You will know it in your heart when you see it. Good luck!

  18. OK so one, this brussels sprouts salad is like my spirit animal. I lovelovelove brussels sprouts and crunchy salads, so the combo is kind of blowing my mind right now. So there’s that.

    Two, I say go for the one that feels most like home to you. If it’s the one with the open floor plan, you will love that it was move-in ready and spacious. If it’s the old charmer, you will love transforming it into a place that you love to live in. I know that really doesn’t help you narrow down the decision at all, but that’s what worked for us — we just had a “feeling” about our house and we went for it. And it’s made all of the little quirks about the home easier to handle, because we know this is home. :)

    Can’t wait to find out what you decide, friend!

  19. We live on a golf course and love it! In 14 years, windows have been broken only 3 times, and it’s exceptionally entertaining to watch the terrible golfers searching for their “fore!”s.

  20. You didn’t mention price…but I think it depends on where you’re at right now. Do you want to sink money into a place? Or are there other things you need to save or spend on right now? The first house appeals to me more.

    • Good point! They are actually both the same price and at the bottom of our price range, so we’d have room to put some money into the second one.

  21. I lived right on a golf course when I was little. I used to go out and collect lost golf balls and tees, then try to sell them back to golfers for 25 cents. So, that could be fun for those future children of yours!

  22. First, the salad looks fantastic. I now know what I’ll be having for lunch next week.

    About the houses, it sounds like you really want the second one. I just recommend making sure you can do all the renovations that you really, really want to do as soon as possible. Before you move, if possible. Or before you unpack everything. At least before you get that pug puppy because that will end up taking up all of your time! Once you get settled and on to other things, it is really difficult to start up the home improvement momentum again.

  23. This salad sure looks delicious..
    Fixer upper sounds very interesting. The golf place sounds awesome, would be nice. All the best for your exciting new venture.

  24. I hate to say it, but I think maybe you should look at more homes? What do you think? When it’s the one (of your dreams) you’ll know right off the bat, without hesitation, at least that’s what most real estate agents say.

  25. our first home was on a golf course, and we LOVED it. quiet except for one major event (which was only a weekend, we rented out our acreage for parking, and it was a fun festive time). loud? yes. one weekend? that’s it, and we could have just gone away for the weekend…

    when buying our current house, we looked at THREE houses on golf courses, because we liked it so much – you are pretty much guaranteed to never have development / neighbors behind you!

    we ended up not buying on a course, but we both say “our next house” will be…

  26. We live by an airport (albeit not a super busy one), and when we bought the house I thought we’d be bothered by the planes going in and out, noise, etc…

    The funny thing is we hardly even notice the planes anymore (except when we’re driving down the road and our 3 yr old yells…….Big Plaaaannnneeee!!!)

    My guess is it’d be the same with the golf course (unless of course a ball gets hit through your window :)

    As far as a fixer-upper goes, the one thing that always seems to happen (from doing small remodeling projects in our own home), is that it usually ends up costing more money than you budgeted for, and usually takes more time that you thought it would. As long as you know that going in, you’ll be fine :)

    *Sounds like your heart is more into house #2*

  27. My husband and I moved into a Craftsman fixer-upper with a beautiful greenbelt in the backyard. The greenbelt had a walking path where families with young children walked their dogs and played together. We never felt any privacy issues and would rather have that open view instead of neighbors behind us. Noise was not a problem either as we enjoyed hearing the light sounds of fun going on outside. It was especially beautiful in winter when the children sledded on the snow mounds (so cute!). The greenbelt backyard was a bonus we LOVED and would be so lucky to find again!

    We did most of the renovating ourselves to save money, and were completely happy with the personalized results; however, after all that hard work, we adamantly agreed we’d NEVER buy another fixer-upper again unless we could afford to pay to have it done. Now that we’ve moved to Southern California we’ve found ourselves open to partial renovations if it meant living in a house with a perfect floor plan, charming features, in a nice, safe neighborhood and in within our budget. It’s worth it in the end and great for resale.

    Go for the 40s house! Start with the bear minimum renovations (the ones you absolutely cannot do without) and see if you even feel you need more afterwards. Best of luck!!!

  28. First of all, that salad looks amazing and I have Brussels sprouts and chicken ready to go…looks like I’ll be getting walnuts on my way home from work!

    Now about the homes…I don’t own a home (yet), so my opinion is not totally valid, but I’m giving my two cents anyway. BUY THE FIXER UPPER. I noticed you said you don’t want to get a fixer up this time around. Note: You said “This time around,” therefore implying that there will be another time that you will get a fixer upper. Right now, you don’t have kids. Although you both work, you don’t. have. kids. It will be 100x harder to manage a fixer upper when you have kids, so if you ever plan on getting a fixer upper, now is the time to do it.

    Plus, I’m a firm believer in buying the worst house in the best neighborhood. So…I say you pull the trigger and bite the bullet for the house you LOVE. :)

    • “This time around” … we bought a semi-fixer-upper for our current house and we had said we weren’t sure if we wanted to do it again. :) But apparently we kind of do want to do it again. That’s what that meant!

  29. I vote for the older charmer home, but I’m sure the other would be lovely as well. My husband and I bought a major fixer-upper in Minneapolis a few years ago, and although it has taken us a while to get it where we love it, it has been such a fun adventure. Have fun, whatever you decide.

  30. If you choose the fixer-upper:
    1. Do you know good contractors who have the time to do a great job on the reno?
    2. Do you have time to check behind the said contractors to make sure they do a great job?

    We live in Richmond VA and charming fixer-uppers are a dime a dozen from small to large mansions. But nicer, newer ready to move-in to homes are rare. So if it was us, we would get the easy to settle into home that would be easy to sell. And then look for a cute fixer upper when we can devote time to fix it.

    Also, you should contact Sherri from younghouselove.com since they are on their 3rd fixer upper here in Richmond and they do an awesome job!

  31. That brussels sprouts salad looks DIVINE. The house situation is an interesting one… I’d say you sound much more excited by the prospect of a fixer-upper (and who wouldn’t with a spiral staircase?) but I would be wary about living on the golf course. That could get old really fast. That being said, it might be a fun quirk!

  32. Charmer – 100%! The character is worth it and while you’ll have to put money into fixing it up, you get to make it exactly what you want. I currently have the “move-in-ready” but our next one will definitely be an old fixer upper!!

  33. A friend of mine and I were just talking the other day and she used to live on a golf course and she said she would never do it again. She got hit pretty hard by a golf ball and was always worried that her kids were going to get hurt. Plus the pesticides used on golf courses aren’t always the best for your health. All that being said, the house sounds amazing! =)

    Love your recipes and blog!

    • Never thought about the pesticides. Good point!

    • Pesticides off the golf course would be a major concern for me, with Puggie babies and someday children. I love the romantic ideal of a fixer-upper but the open floorplan (so wonderful with kids) and move-in readiness of #1 would be ideal for a busy household.

      I can’t wait to try the recipe. I have never considered slicing Brussel Sprouts to use in a salad, They are one of my absolute fav veggies! Thanks!!

  34. My hubby and I did the fixer upper route– we loved it and we’d do it again in a heartbeat! BUT we’re huge DIY-ers and love that kind of thing.

  35. The salad looks delish!

    Oh man, I don’t envy you and house-hunting right now. My husband and I sign on our soon to be home on Friday (eek!) and this is the forth house we put an offer on. I don’t know how the market is where you are, but it is INSANE here in Dallas. We were outbid three times before we finally landed on our soon-to-be house. I’m really happy with the house we got, but it is definitely a dated 1950′s home, so we’ll be tackling the kitchen and two bathrooms, as well as knocking down walls. While it would have been nice to have a house that was already “done”, I’m excited that we get to put our touch on this house and make it OUR home. Most importantly, this house has AWESOME bones- new roof, new AC, electrical and sewer lines have been updated. Our only “bones” issue is tied to the plumbing, but the owners fixed parts of the plumbing to make the house livable and we will fix the other plumbing issues as we redesign the bathrooms. So I guess what I’m saying is that the right house will fall in your lap. As much as I didn’t think it would for us (after looking at EVERY. SINGLE. HOUSE. in Dallas that met our budget and school district needs (something that I never thought was that important, not having kids, until the house hunting began)), our soon-to-be house sort of did fall in our laps.

  36. Bah I have no experience with this BUT I feel like even through this post I can tell you want the fixer-upper! As long as, as someone else pointed out, you don’t have to be afraid of getting hit by flying golf balls and you have a good idea of what the fixing is going to cost you because my fixer-upper car that I bought secondhand SUCKS. But cars are way different. I don’t think fixer-uppers really exist. Anyway. I want you to go with your gut! And I want to watch you transform the house (like the way Ashley of Edible Perspective does a few house constructions posts here and there) in a non creepy way! And I love this salad and that line about Bjork never noticing what’s in the fridge made me feel way better about my boyfriend who never notices/eats the food I make and leave for him in the fridge! Sigh. I, too, have learned to pack him food or put it in his face if I want him to eat it.

  37. Both houses sound great. I would say it sounds like you love #2 the questions is do you have the time and means to complete a remodel…It is a LOT of work.

    The other thing you might want to look at is which one will be a better investment.

    In regards to the golf course…well that is a matter of personal preference. We have a home on the fairway of a golf course in the Sierra Nevada mountains just outside of Yosemite. All the grass attracts TONS of deer and other wildlife therefore we love it.

    I do caution you, we had to plant trees along the perimeter of the property to prevent balls from breaking our windows and sometime those little pesky balls are resilient and make it through. The players are supposed to leave their information so they can pay for the damage, but sadly that does not happen often.

    Hope this helps. Good luck!

  38. That is a tough one!!
    If you can see yourself with a pug and a passel of kids down the road, my gut says to go with #1. Here’s my kid-centric response:
    School districts, walkable parks – mega pluses with kids. Having close friends (and emergency babysitters) nearby – 2 extra gold stars.
    And an open floor plan, where you can watch your toddlers try to end their own lives by jumping off of things as you prepare dinner? Super helpful.
    I hear you on the charm factor! I do. But you can do so much to add to a house like #1 – everything from paint color, to buying “antique” or vintage furniture from the era you like, to updating the exterior, and landscaping – I think the kid-friendly aspects of #1 are not to be overlooked!

  39. Jodi severance says:

    Why do you do this to me? Now I have to go back to the store to get Brussels sprouts! I have 5 children! I home school! I can’t be running to the store every day! Oh we’ll….off I go to Trader Joe’s…..can you post house pics?

    • Hahaha! I actually don’t have any good ones that really represent the houses well… I only snapped one at the fixer upper and I don’t have any of my own of the first house. But if we go back I’ll try to take some!

  40. I figured the wonderful salad helped you emotionally with the house hunt, but not in practical terms. You need to really consider how much time and effort (not to mention money) you will realistically be able to invest in the fixer-upper. It sounds like one of those houses where, once you start the fixing, hidden issues will surface – and those always cost more than the ones you can see! A house that is not a appealing cosmetically can be changed more easily to one having character and charm.

    Also, I noticed you mentioned the good schools with the first one, but not the second. As an educator myself, that makes a huge difference when there are children or are going to be children.

    Keep us posted!

  41. I love brussels sprouts, so I’m trying this one out.
    House #2: You need hardwood floors for the baby pug. (Having had shedding cats and dogs, vacuuming carpets was a real bee with an itch!) And that swinging door? Well, that is just the cat’s meow. I lived on a golf course once and loved it, even the “pings.” (If you hear “fore,” duck!) Used to walk my dog around it and was always in awe of the endless, beautiful, peaceful green all around me. (Plus, if you add up the yardage, you know how far you’ve walked!) But the fixer-up part is unappealing, to say the least. Hmpf.

  42. You can change the house but not the neighborhood. Plus although the renovations will be a pain they will ultimately be all of your decisions. Even though the first house is move in ready, would how it looks today be what you chose to do if you started fresh. We actually just bought a house that is very similar to your #2. We will have 3 weeks to do work before we need to be officially moved it. The plan is to do the necessities – floors upstairs and paint. Then slowly tackle the rest once we know what will work best after we get into our routine.

  43. I’m not a fan of brussel sprouts, but I gotta say that between this recipe and the “Brussel Sprouts with Bacon” recipe, I’m thinking of giving them another try.

    As for the home choice, what a nice dilemma to have. Being an architecture buff, graphic designer, and pretty handy with a hammer, I would lean slightly towards the fixer-upper. Since you don’t have children to run after (after the children at school that you do run after, of course), it’d be easier to find the time to do a lil’ home renovation with the hubbs. What a cute bonding project!

  44. Only you guys can make a true decision as to which house to pick – ALL houses – no matter what state you buy them in – are works in progress …just some are more than others. And yall seem to work so well together (as evidenced on this blog) :)
    Good luck to yall
    Now coming back to this salad- this salad is awesome! I have eaten brussel sprouts many different ways but not like this! Thanks for sharing :)

  45. Well, you’re only young once and have the energy for a fixer-upper. Once you have kids, you really won’t want to do that. Plus, fixer uppers tend to be money pits. Something is ALWAYS breaking. And any “easy” remodel turns into a major project because old houses aren’t square and nothing ever fits right. Our first house was a gorgeous 1925 brick colonial and we loved it. It was full of character and we had random strangers knock on the door and offer to buy it. Now we live in a 11-year-old suburban 2-story. Things still break here (I’m currently without a dishwasher!), but I guess that’s home ownership for you! Go with your heart and you won’t be sorry.

  46. I am not a Brussels sprout fan but perhaps I hav not prepared them right. I will give this delicious salad a try.

    I say the fixer upper, it sounds charming and if you have the time go for it!

  47. I know what I am doing with the brussels sprouts sitting in the fridge!

    House hunting ahhhhh decisions decisions. Good luck!

  48. Okay, here is my take: Love the idea of house #2, the charm, the potential, I am all in to that girlie. Our friends have a 1940 here in Idaho. Love so many things about it but it is “cut up” into non functional rooms, feels maze-like UNTIL they finally remodeled the kitchen and took out a big wall which doubled the size of their kitchen and it turned out MARVELOUS! Now if I can just get her to rid herself of that ridiculous Victorian furniture in the “parlor” where no body sits or uses unless they are having “tea” with dessert. Hmmm, not functional. So, if you end up buying #2, take down a few walls still keep the charm and you have a win-win. Oh, and the golf thing. . . my husband would approve. :)

  49. I vote for the fixer upper. My hubby made that choice and we’re loving making our house our dream home!

  50. I like the looks of that salad! Thank you, THANK YOU, for telling how many brussels sprouts you used. I hate it when recipes just say “3 cups chopped apples.” Er, yes. So, how many should I buy?

    About the golf course, I lived right up against one for two years and it was miserable in the summer. They mow about four times a week in those enormous, rocket engine mowers at 4:30 in the morning! RRRRRRRRRR past the bedroom window, all the way down to the other end of the course, then five minutes later, RRRRRRRRR past the bedroom again. I got no sleep at all for months. Thank god it was only an apartment and I could get out.

  51. Golf course because everything is taken care of outdoors and every one is always happy on a golf course!! I can’t imagine spending hours fixing up a house probably because that’s just not our thing. Best of luck!

  52. Get your butts into the city so we can hang out more!
    And please renovate so I can live vicariously through you. People are right when they say that once the kiddos come along, renovations get put off. Andy and I did a fixer-upper before our current house and loved it… now we can’t imagine that, with all of the little people around… but it was rewarding and challenging. Go for it, I say!

  53. If you are planning to start a family I would pay more attention to the neighbors and neighborhood of each house. Other young family’s? Do they look well adjusted? You will want a place you will feel good about letting your future kids run down the block w/ neighbor kids. Location, location, location. Dream house is secondary as long as its big enough.

  54. without seeing photos and based solely on your very detailed descriptions, I would go with the fixer upper. But I also agree with Aimee, check out the hood, if it’s also family friendly in addition to having the sort of home you feel you can drive up to and live in and love for a long time, then it’s definitely the house for you.

    have fun!

  55. My vote is the fixer upper but only if you can get it for good price. We just finished a fixed a year go – the first thing we did was have someone clean the windows it really made a big difference. Then we started in cleaning and patching and taking down the ugly lights throughout the house. We had an estimate on carpet but only after we’d painted, Kilz paint – be sure you wait a day between coats – it was great as it got rid of all the old odors in the home. We replaced so much that it felt like we built it from scratch. Septic pumped – well rewired from the house (and the well worked phew) there wasn’t a hot water heater?? or a stand ?? Lots of work it took us 4 months (after all the trash was taken out and off the property) we ended up tearing down the fireplace as it was in a really odd spot. Made some good memories – the lawn had been professionally landscaped you could tell so I just trimmed trees & bushes watered it a lot – replaced sprinkler heads, valves, etc. it is such a beautiful yard now. The home had sat empty for three years and the neighbors were so glad we were making it pretty again. New roof and new paint and it looks fabulous! 2000 sq. ft. beauty! Your young so I say just jump in feet first and go for it. —- we did all the work ourselves except washing the windows lol reroofing and laying new carpet. we did install new flooring in the kitchen and “mud room”. Best of luck and have fun with it.

  56. Ahh exciting that you’re looking for a new place! I live in Minneapolis too, so I am trying to imagine the neighborhoods that you are looking in but a golf course and lake is a pretty common occurance around these parts :) Another thought is that since the majority of the year we can’t even golf here, it might not be too weird

    I really like the idea of shaved brussel sprouts! I just got a new mandolin that is beckoning me to take it out of the box!

  57. I have gone for the fixer upper option. Took quite some time but I loooooooooooooooooooove my house now. I never want to leave. Also open floor plans bad idea with very young children and if you are a bit of a hoarder like me=D. Good luck with your choices though. Its exciting. I need a good mandolin.

  58. I loved reading this post because it reminded me of watching House Hunters (which I’ve been doing WAY too much of lately). I think the fixer-upper sounds great! If you live on a golf course at least you’d have someone maintaining your beautiful view for the summer!

    I also love thinly-sliced brussels sprouts. My favorite way to eat them is on pizza, but I think this salad looks wonderful!

  59. This salad looks absolutely TO DIE FOR! I love shredded Brussels sprouts in my salads too. Can’t wait until they are in season here in Montana. I will definitely make this!

  60. Make a list of wants vs needs. Can you afford to sink all the money into the fixer-upper? No matter how cute it is, if you are house poor you aren’t having any fun.

  61. Salted dark chocolate should be on the side. just kidding ;) Looks yummy

  62. It’s clear you’re smitten with house #2 and it sounds amazing!! I just bought my first home which was a semi-fixer upper (at least the kitchen totally was!)… it took us 5 months to re-do the kitchen and we did it ourselves. It is beautiful, and I absolutely love it because we made it ours. Although you know it will be work, it is sooo worth it when you see the finished product. Besides, the rest of the house sounds sooo amazing! Go with your gut! Good luck in your final decision!

  63. Hi there! My name is Jessica, and I run a food blog called Floptimism where, every Saturday, I write a Weekend Wrap-Up post to share all of my favorite internet finds from the past week. I wanted to let you know that I absolutely loved this post — I have a soft spot for chicken salads and brussels sprouts recipes– so much so that I included it in my blog’s Weekend Wrap-Up. I’ve included the link to the post in case you’re interested. Thanks for such a fantastic recipe!

    http://www.floptimism.com/2013/09/weekend-wrap-up-highlight-reel.html

  64. I don’t think there could be more of my favorite foods combined in one salad! You have me craving this delicious dish for breakfast :)

  65. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe Lindsay, it has become a weekly dins for us!! It’s delicious!!

  66. My husband and four year old LOVE this recipe. I’m making it tonight for about the 10th time. Thanks for sharing.

  67. Ryan Nicole says:

    This recipe looks to DIE for! Do you think it would be strange to exclude the fresh orange juice? I am not a huge fan of orange, but the rest looks fabulous!

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