Monday, May 12, 2014

Sometimes I just want coleslaw...

Yesterday was a busy day, it was hot and I knew in a couple of hours we were heading outside to work on a drainage "project" in the backyard.  I was dreaming about food once again and I knew that when we came back inside that evening, I just wanted to eat coleslaw...

Coleslaw...or "Slaw", if you're from the south, can be a hit or miss side dish.  You either love it or you hate it, and we all seem to have our own "druthers" regarding it's taste, color and texture.  

It's an essential side dish to any backyard BBQ and burger event.  It's delightful on its own, but spoon it on a burger squished between two hearty buns and your mouth will surely begin to water.  Snuggled up alongside Brisket, Ribs or Chicken, it lends a tender sweetness and light air to the entire meal.  It "belongs" next to a pile of beans (baked OR ranch style), and makes a great "stand alone" midday snack.

Every part of the country seems to change it up and vary it, and the variations can run between delicious and er...not so delicious, depending on where you grew up and what your tolerance for "change" is.  

The battles begin when these questions are asked...
Should there be peppers?  Should they be hot ?  Should I add onion?  What color cabbage?  Carrot?  What about shredded broccoli stems?  Do you slice it all thinly, or cut it into chunks?  Should your base be mayo, sour cream, buttermilk, mustard or vinegar?  There are enough variations on coleslaw that it can make your head spin! 

My idea of a perfect Coleslaw is one that has a light creaminess, but not too heavy;  a "barely there" sweetness, but not syrupy;  a "zing" of vinegar, not so overwhelming that your eyes water; a finely shredded mix of colorful veggies, rich in flavor and texture, but not so fine that it becomes a mushy pile.

My idea of a perfect Coleslaw is this one.  It has certainly become a staple in our home, and easily satisfies the tastes of a Florida boy and a Texas girl.

Almost Southern Slaw

1/2 head purple cabbage (semi-finely shredded)
1/2 head green cabbage (semi-finely shredded)
2 medium sized carrots, peeled and shredded
1/2 red bell pepper, thinly sliced (green works too!)
3 Tbsp. red onion, very thinly sliced, then quartered
1/2 C. mayo (I use an olive oil based)
1/2 C. greek yogurt (I use organic)
2 Tbsp. Cider Vinegar (or favorite vinegar)
3 Tbsp. Coconut Sugar (or any sweetener)
1/2 tsp. salt (I use Himalayan Pink)
1/4 freshly ground pepper

In a large bowl, stir together cabbage, carrot, pepper and onion.

In a small bowl, mix Mayo through pepper.  Stir with a whisk to combine well.  Pour over cabbage mixture and stir well to combine.  Chill for at least an hour to blend flavors.  Overnight is great too!

To easily print this recipe, go HERE.

This recipe was adapted from one found on

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