Saturday, 23 November 2013

Tangy Red Cabbage Slaw

When you unload your produce basket and this is what you see, you instantly know exactly where this is going...

I don't actually fancy coleslaw very much, if I'm being honest. My mother used to make it when I was growing up and I'd usually decline it. Unless it had that vinegar dressing. Then it was OK. But cabbage smothered in mayonnaise? Thank goodness I can use the vegan excuse.

This salad is super simple, super good for you, and a super good way for me to use up the cabbage that the farm sent me in my basket. If I had gotten a full head of cabbage, I would have been hard-pressed to find a use for all of it. But thank goodness they sent me two for good measure! I suppose I actually do mean that. It brought me to approach this week's Salad Saturday with a little more imagination than usual...

So here's how you do it.

Start off by coring and shredding your cabbage. (If you're new to coring cabbage, check this out.) To shred it, you basically just slice it really thinly with a sharp knife. It'll sort of crumble into those shreds like the lettuce restaurants put on your sandwich. You know what I mean. Now do that with all your cabbage.
Shred all your cabbage like this. If you have a food processor, I suppose you could use that, but it'll be super small. I like a bit more crunch in my coleslaw.

Next, you'll want to shred some carrots. Carrots make coleslaw coleslaw, rather than shredded cabbage à la vinaigrette. You'll take a cheese grater and shred them so they're quite small. I don't bother to peel my carrots, because the peel is good for you and you won't even taste it when you're done.

So your carrots will look like this. (Oh, all right, so I cheated. You knew I would; I don't have time for this crap.)

Now mix the veg together. This is the main base of your salad. Now you just have the dressing to worry about!

The clout of flavour comes from a few different elements. The tang is definitely the apple cider vinegar, but I also added celery seed, dried mustard and dill weed for a more complex flavour. There's nothing worse than a coleslaw that only tastes like vinegar. The apple cider vinegar also brings a hint of fruitiness, which (if you don't know) goes really well with cabbage. (If you ever have way too much cabbage, just slow-braise it in apple juice if you don't believe me...)
If you're not quite sure where to find these ingredients, check out Bulk Barn. I got all of mine from there, most likely.
I used the most beautiful olive oil I've ever tasted and the only one I buy anymore: Zatoun, a Fair Trade olive oil from Palestine whose flavour is just as amazing as its story.

There's a hint of sweetness and molasses from the brown sugar. If you can, get a whole brown sugar so that it has a nice, rich, dark flavour. I used Camino's Muscovado, which is just such a sugar.

It was about time I moved away from the lettuce. You're welcome.

Tangy Red Cabbage Slaw
Makes 4 generous servings

1/4 red cabbage
2 large or 3 medium carrots
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon dark brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon celery seed
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard powder
1/4 teaspoon dry dill weed

Core and shred the cabbage and place in a large bowl. Grate the carrots and mix into the cabbage. Whisk together remaining ingredients and pour over the cabbage and carrots, mixing well. Let the coleslaw rest in the fridge for a few hours, so that the flavours will blend. Serve as a side or on your favourite sandwich. Enjoy!


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