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Purple Slaw

February 17, 2011

While I was sick last week, I went into full-on hibernation mode. I slept a lot, barely left the house, and became a miserable person to be around. Maybe it wasn’t the most healthy approach, but I was too grumpy to be reasoned with. This was no doubt exasperated by the long-term effects of my first “real” winter, day after day of cloudy skies, bare trees and lifeless mud.

However, while I was curled up under the covers hating everything, the barren fields of Oxford underwent a transformation. Patches of grass all over town have turned into this:

Obviously, I’m inexperienced with the whole concept of seasons, but I think this is the one called “Spring.” I’m definitely not ready to put away my heavy coat, but it looks like things are finally warming up.

Given how much these little bursts of color have perked me up, I thought they might do the same for my supper table. I devised a purple-and-orange coleslaw, which was a total experiment, but I think it turned out pretty well.  I’d love to hear other people’s suggestions/ideas if you try it out.

I started with purple cabbage, mainly for the color. The flavor is bit more assertive than green cabbage, so be prepared. I chopped this into thin slices.

I grabbed a handful of arugula on a whim. This was roughly chopped.

This was followed by a julienne-frenzy: red apples, carrots and red onion, all sliced thin. (I sprinkled lemon juice on the apples to discourage browning, although in the end the cabbage dyed them pink.)

For the dressing, I made a honey-mustard vinegarette, which is basically everything yellow from my flavoring-shelf: honey, mustard, cider vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper.

I tossed it all together and let it soften in the fridge for a few hours.

I tossed in a generous teaspoon of lemon juice and some salt and pepper just before serving. I’m not used to thinking of coleslaw as refreshing, but this really hit the Springtime spot.

Purple Slaw

Serves 6 as a side dish

1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
½ teaspoon prepared mustard
1 Tablespoon honey
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
pinch each of salt and pepper

Other Ingredients:
3 cups purple cabbage, thinly shredded
1 medium carrot, peeled and julienned
¼ small red onion (~¼ cup), thinly sliced
1 red apple (I used a Jazz apple), washed, julienned, and sprinkled with lemon juice
2 heaping tablespoons arugula/rocket, roughly chopped
salt and pepper to taste
~1 teaspoon extra lemon juice

1. Whisk together dressing ingredients in a small bowl.
2. Mix together cabbage, carrot, onion, apple and arugula in a large bowl. Drizzle dressing over mixture and toss to coat.
3. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours to marinate. Just before serving, add more salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste.

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