Sunday, May 25, 2014

Asian Red Cabbage Coleslaw

Asian Red Cabbage Slaw: The final product ready for transporting to the barbecue.
I am seeing red this morning: red cabbage, red onion, red mixing bowl, red chopping board...all because I am making a cabbage slaw to take to a Memorial weekend barbecue.

Red cabbage came in our weekly delivery from SLO Veg and it was one huge head of cabbage! I opted to use red instead of green because I thought it would look more American. I should note here that the red cabbage and red onion are actually a shade of purple Sigh! I perused the Pinterest and found several variations, but the Asian version sounded just perfect to accompany the barbecue host's pork loin roast. I was actually going to host the barbecue, but then I got a better offer. I am no dummy. I also opted to make a batch of baked beans, al la Pioneer Woman style, but that is for another blog entry.

Anyway, back to the slaw: I had red cabbage, red onion, green onions, shredded carrots and that fennel bulb that I had been carving on for several days. Fennel is a pretty strong flavor, and a little can go a long way. But chopped up in a slaw would give it a nice fresh, interesting punch, I thought.

I began by assembling all the vegetables and the dressing ingredients. I had rice vinegar, lime juice, sesame oil, sugar, soy sauce, coriander seeds and ground ginger. In a perfect world I would have fresh ginger and cilantro leaves, but this was the best I could do today. Besides, I get to use my mortar and pestle to smash the coriander seeds, so that would be fun. Oh holy senses, Batman, was it ever fragrant, too! 

I peeled off the outermost leaves of the cabbage and then proceeded to halve it with my Cutco santuko knife. Cutco offers two lengths and we got the shorter knife, but now I was wishing for the longer one because this one didn't reach all the way through this huge head of cabbage. (Birthday present hint!) I ended up taking out my old Viking butcher knife and finishing the job. Then I used the santuko to carefully slice a half head of cabbage, split into smaller wedges, into slaw. I got to use my big red Tupperware bowl, the one that comes out on holidays when preparing large batches of salads, whether it be green, red, potato, macaroni or pasta. Back in the day, I would bring my salad in that bowl and serve out of it, because we might have a crowd of 50-60 relatives to feed. But today we were going to a much smaller gathering, and I just needed to mixed my slaw without dumping it all over the countertop and then I put it into a smaller container for transporting. 

Next I mixed up the dressing: 3 tablespoons of rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, 1 teaspoon of sesame oil and lime juice, 2 teaspoons white sugar, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger and 1 teaspoon of coriander seeds, smashed. I mixed this up, then added a bit more soy sauce and sugar, so probably 2 tablespoons soy sauce and 4 teaspoons sugar, total. I stirred it all up and poured it over the cabbage mixture, then sprinkled on some coarse salt and fresh ground black pepper and stirred it all up. The red bowl really was handy!

I think the salad turned out to be light, refreshing and pretty! I can't wait for dinner time!


3 Tbs rice vinegar,
2 Tbs soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp lime juice
4 tsp white sugar
1/2 tsp ground ginger (fresh grated ginger would be nicer)
1 tsp coriander seeds, smashed (fresh cilantro would be nice, too)

1/2 large head red cabbage, sliced
1/2 large red onion, chopped
2 green onions, diced
1/2 c carrots, shredded
1/4 c fennel, sliced and diced

Prepare vegetables and put into a large mixing bowl. Mix together dressing ingredients and pour over vegetables. Stir well and season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate until serving time. 

Makes about 12-15 servings

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