Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Asian-style Cabbage Slaw

Week 7's selection included red-leaf lettuce (6 heads), collards, Chinese cabbage, curly endive (chicory), green garlic, and the aforementioned broccoli. Since the July 4th holiday weekend was approaching, I decided to make some coleslaw for a family barbecue. Traditional coleslaw can be hit or miss for me (and depends largely on whether it is made with onions, which I can't stand). It also uses a lot of mayonnaise, which, although it tastes great, can be overwhelming. I wanted something a little different that would use Chinese cabbage instead of regular cabbage and give coleslaw a lighter taste. The stalk of a Chinese cabbage leaf tastes pretty much like regular cabbage. The leafy part, however, is more tender but still has the same flavor.

A simple search turned up this recipe from Bobby Flay for Napa Cabbage Slaw. I modified the recipe quite a bit to make my own version that gives the cabbage an Asian flavor without the spiciness.

Asian-style Cabbage Slaw
(Print this recipe)

Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
2-3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1-2 Tbsp. mayonnaise
1-2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1-2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 head Chinese cabbage or Napa cabbage (plus another head if need be), shredded
1 large carrot or 2 small carrots, shredded
2-3 scallions, thinly sliced

1. Mix the first 6 ingredients. Taste and adjust the quantities of any of the marinade elements. I did a lot of fiddling with the oil, mayonnaise, soy sauce, and sugar because I started with too much acid (i.e. lemon juice and vinegar).

2. Add the cabbage, carrot, and scallions and toss to mix. Let sit in the refrigerator for at least half an hour. Mine sat in the refrigerator overnight. The longer it sits, the more the vegetables will sink into the marinade and the more marinade you will have. Once you take it out of the fridge, feel free to add more shredded cabbage to increase the volume and soak up the marinade. If you don't add more cabbage or other vegetables, you will end up with a growing pool of marinade at the bottom. This doesn't affect the taste; only the presentation.


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