Sunday, September 21, 2014

Classical Lettuce Play - Part 4

Raw Slaw

Classic Vinegary Cole Slaw


Whether it's beside fried chicken, a burger, or a sandwich, I think we can all agree that Cole Slaw is the staple side dish. It's refreshing, crunchy, and if you're like me and prefer vinegary Cole slaw to a mayonnaisey aka creamy one, it provides that lovely acidity we need to cut through all the grease.

For the purists out there, I'm going to give you a more traditional recipe for vinegary Cole Slaw, followed by my take.

Here's how you do it traditional:

Ingredients

1/2 a head of Green Cabbage and 1/2 a head of Red Cabbage OR 1 Whole Green Cabbage OR 1 Whole Red Cabbage - I used 2 kinds for colour contrast - Rinsed, the core cut out with your trusty paring knife - see the image below - and then sliced as thinly as you can -These varieties of cabbage are not only cheaper than others, they are extremely versatile and can be used in anything from stir fries, to veggie pancakes and fritters, to slaws, to cabbage rolls!



2 or 3 Carrots - The tough woody bits at the ends removed with a paring knife, and peeled and grated

1 Cup of White Vinegar

1/2 Cup of White Sugar

Salt and Pepper - to taste

2 Tablespoons of Dijon Mustard

Equipment

Measuring Cup

1 Small Pot

1 Whisk

Measuring Spoons

1 (small) Paring Knife

1 Regular Kitchen Knife

1 Cutting Board

1 Large Bowl

1 Pair of Tongs

1 Peeler

1 Box Grater

Plastic wrap or a plate slightly smaller than your bowl.

Put your sliced cabbage in your salad bowl and break the slices up with your hands to separate the layers.

Dump in the carrots.

In a small pot, pour in the vinegar and sugar and heat on medium, whisking until the sugar dissolves.

Turn off the stove and take the pot off the heat.

Whisk in the mustard and season with salt and pepper to your taste.

Pour the warm dressing over the cabbage and carrots and toss with a pair of tongs to coat.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or the plate and put it in the fridge for at least 10 minutes to allow the cabbage to soak up the dressing.

This will serve at least 6 people as a side dish, and will keep for at least 3 days in the fridge.

Enjoy!

Asian Style Slaw



As borders fade and cuisines merge, more and more flavours from the east are coming west with delightful results! Cole slaw no longer has to taste like only vinegar and sugar or mayonnaise. With a little imagination and a love of those flavors, you can take an ordinary classic and make it into something extraordinary!

Inspired by the crunchy vegetables in Vietnamese Banh Mi sandwiches, I decided to tweak the classic Cole Slaw recipe to fit my love of Asian flavors.

This will feed at least 6 people as a side dish, and will keep for at least 3 days in the fridge.

Here's how you do it My Way:

Ingredients

1/2 a head of Green Cabbage and 1/2 a head of Red Cabbage OR 1 Whole Green Cabbage OR 1 Whole Red Cabbage - Rinsed, the core cut out with your trusty paring knife and sliced as thinly as you can

1 Cup Grated Daikon Radish - Daikon is the short name for the big radishes commonly used in Asian cuisine. See the image below. They can now be found in many major grocery and fruit stores, and in Asian Markets. The radish needs a good rinse or peeling before grating it. Depending on the size of your radish, half of one will get you the amount you need for this recipe.

Daikon

2 or 3 Carrots - peeled and grated

1 Tablespoon of Sesame Seeds - Toasted - to toast the sesame seeds, put 'em in a hot pan for a minute and then take the pan immediately off the heat. This will allow the seeds to release a bit of their oil and become crunchy, nutty and delicious.

1 Cup Vinegar - you can use white, rice wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar or a mix.

1/2 Cup of White Sugar

2 Tablespoons of Soya Sauce

1 Teaspoon of Fresh Grated Ginger

1 Drop of Sesame Seed Oil

Hot Sauce - To Taste - Optional - Sriracha, a Thai chili sauce, would work well

Salt and Pepper - To Taste

Equipment

Measuring Spoons

1 Small Pot

1 Box Grater

1 Whisk

1 Large Bowl

Plastic Wrap or a plate slightly smaller than your salad bowl

1 Knife

1 Cutting Board

1 Pair of Tongs

As you would with classic Cole Slaw, dump the cabbage in your bowl and break up the layers with your fingers.

Dump in the grated carrots and daikon.

In a small pot, pour in the vinegar and sugar and heat, whisking until the sugar dissolves.

Add the soy sauce and the ginger and whisk together, leaving the pot on the heat for a minute more.

Remove it from the heat and add the sesame oil, hot sauce, if using, salt and pepper and whisk again.

Pour the warm dressing over the vegetables and toss to coat using your trusty tongs. Add your toasted sesame seeds and toss again.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a plate and put the bowl in the fridge for at least 10 minutes to allow the salad to soak up the dressing.

Once it's ready, you can serve it as a side dish, or as a crunchy element in burgers and sandwiches!

Fried Rice with Asian Style Slaw



Enjoy!

And stay tuned for next week when I'll be making everyone's favourite: Caesar Salad!

Samantha R. Gold

Questions? Comments? Requests?

Bring it on!

I can be reached at:  for.the.culinarily.challenged@gmail.com

Trolls will be unceremoniously deleted and dismissed.


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