There is a list of certain foods that Scott, my husband, absolutely will not eat, the reasons of which are as complicated, mundane or unfathomable as anyone else’s culinary peccadilloes. Quite possibly this is the shortest list of verboten victuals ever known to me. But it is a list nonetheless, one which I take very seriously, not only because the customer is always right, but because you want the customer to have seconds, thereby minimizing the risk of too many leftovers that you couldn’t possibly eat all by yourself no matter how much you’d love to.
Considering how short the list is (eggplant, fin fish, cabbage), you would think I’d just shut up and work around it, confining my consumption of items on the list for when we aren’t dining together. For the most part this does work, but there are occasions when one’s culinary creativity feels cramped, or the cravings for an offending item crop up when you are just snapping on the stove burners and getting out the shiny blades. These are the times when you can exercise the equally unfathomable loopholes, when eggplant gets a pass in moussaka, but not in ratatouille, and when fish cakes are friendly, but a slab of fried flounder is a fiend.
Remarkably, cabbage gets the green light, too, sometimes, but only when it’s very green, very clean and very new. Why cole slaw makes the grade, I will never know, but I’m not quibbling, I’m celebrating and about to toss a bowl full of confetti, cabbage confetti with home-made dressing, to go with the fish cakes.
This post is my submission for Weekend Herb Blogging # 81, being hosted this week by the creator of the event, Kalyn Denny of Kalyn's Kitchen.
Confetti Cole Slaw
1 small – medium head of Savoy cabbage, a milder variety of green cabbage
¾ cup apple cider vinegar or other light, non-red vinegar
½ cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup finely chopped yellow, green and/or red pepper
1 cup finely chopped carrot
1/3 cup finely chopped scallion, greens only
(Note: cole slaw is as individual as spaghetti sauce. Outside of cabbage, there are no rights or wrongs regarding other ingredients, quantities or dressing. It's entirely up to you, and the results will be entirely satisfying regardless. Chilled cabbage makes for a crisper slaw. Blender technique courtesy of my mother.)
Combine vinegar with sugar and salt in small saucepan, heating until sugar is dissolved. Set aside to cool.
Remove outer, darker and soiled leaves from cabbage. Cut off stem end and part of core, but it’s unnecessary to completely core the head. Wash cabbage under cold running water, checking inside the looser leaves for an insect or two. Coarsely cut the head into cubes approximately 2 inches overall and place cubes in a blender. Fill blender with cold water, fully covering cabbage cubes. Pulse blender until cabbage shreds and chips into confetti, taking care not to over process; over processing causes mushy results. Drain cabbage in a large colander or strainer. Since the cabbage itself will release a lot of its own water, you can reserve the liquid for a vegetable stock if desired. Allow cabbage at least 15 minutes to drain.
In a large bowl combine the drained cabbage with the other vegetables. Pour dressing over slaw, mixing well. Set aside for at least ½ hour for flavors to develop.
Serves 6. --