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Fast, fresh coleslaw. January 12, 2013

Posted by ourfriendben in homesteading, recipes.
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Silence Dogood here, continuing my winter coleslaw recipes with one that’s so fast and easy, it’s shameful it’s so good. One of the great conveniences of our day is ready-made fresh coleslaw, bagged and waiting in the produce department for you to pick up a bag, take it home, dress it, and serve. But of course, convenience comes with a drawback: These bags contain plenty of shredded green cabbage, but a sorry dearth of shredded red cabbage and carrots, and no onion whatsoever.

Fortunately, the solution is at hand in the form of bags of shredded purple (aka red) cabbage and carrots. You can even purchase containers of pre-diced onion, red and green bell pepper, and practically anything else you’d like to add to your coleslaw. But since I like sweet onion, such as Vidalia, Walla Walla, or Candy in my slaw, I prefer to buy a whole onion and dice it myself. If you’re wondering why I don’t simply buy whole heads of cabbage, red cabbage, a bag of whole carrots, and etc., sometimes I do. But sometimes, when it’s just me and our friend Ben at dinner and there’s only so much slaw we can eat, I prefer the ready-made option.

To make this slaw, I buy a bag of pre-shredded cole slaw mix, a bag of shredded carrots, and a bag of shredded red cabbage, along with a sweet onion and a bottle of chunky blue cheese dressing. (You could also use pepper ranch or cheese ranch dressing if you’d prefer.) I mix the bag of slaw fixings with half a bag of shredded carrots and half a bag of shredded red cabbage.

Then I dice half a sweet onion and mix it in, stir in half a bottle of dressing, add fresh-cracked black pepper and salt (we like RealSalt) to taste, throw in a splash of lemon juice, and stir well to mix. The goal is to coat the slaw ingredients, not drown them, so I always start with just a half-bottle of dressing and then add more if needed after tasting. Cover and chill before serving.

This is about the simplest slaw you can make. If you want to dress it up a bit, you can add some golden raisins (for sweetness) and/or pepitas, roasted pumpkinseeds, for crunch. You can add caraway seeds, cumin seeds, and/or black mustardseeds to enrich the flavor, or even toss in some fennel seeds for a sweet anise touch. (I’d recommend ading any of these seeds only if you’re using blue cheese dressing rather than ranch.) You could also shred half a fennel bulb and add it for a hint of licorice if you wished. All these add-ons are good, but the basic slaw is delicious as is. You’ll get no complaints and many requests for seconds, I promise!

‘Til next time,

Silence

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