Crunchy Cabbage & Peanut Slaw

Crunchy Cabbage & Peanut Slaw

As readers of my monthly newsletter know, I was that girl that brought a salad to a Super Bowl watching party. Yes. (But also, someone should be that person. The salad is always gone at the end of the night--or halfway through the night - and everyone is always glad to at least have a little freshness on their plates between tasting different dips and chips). 

Where this crunchy cabbage peanut slaw began: I am a pack-my-own lunch kinda gal, but some days getting out of the office just to walk around is really the best medicine. It was a day like that when I wandered to Natural Grocers (a few blocks away), and picked up a prepared salad -- I was craving fresh veggies. The gulp of fresh air was nice, but the salad was dry and pretty boring. It was the idea of the salad that inspired me though: a simple cabbage slaw with a peanut dressing. 

Crunchy Cabbage & Peanut Slaw
Crunchy Cabbage & Peanut Slaw

So I went home and dreamed up a better version, which is still a simple salad but it calls for a LOT of zesty peanut dressing -- a dressing far zestier and more addicting than the original. (So addicting in fact, that it also makes a very good dip for crudités).

You'll notice right away that this dressing calls for a semi-long list of ingredients. They are (almost) all shelf-stable pantry staples, and despite the list of ingredients the magic of this sauce is in how it's made: plop everything in the blender and go. That's it. This is where I tell you: do not fear that list of ingredients, embrace it. It is worth it. And by the time you've checked to see if you have everything you need, you're only 30 seconds away from finishing the dressing. 

Crunchy Cabbage & Peanut Slaw

Crunchy Cabbage & Peanut Slaw

Published February 19, 2019 by
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Serves: 4   |    Active Time: 20 minutes



Ingredients:


For the peanut dressing (yields about 1 cup):
  • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons water to thin dressing, as needed

  • For the slaw:
  • 3-4 cups finely shredded green cabbage
  • 4-5 green onions, white and dark green parts removed
  • 1/4 cup minced cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
  • 1/2 cup roasted salted peanuts, roughly chopped
  • Optional additional add-ins we also love: 1 cup chopped bok choy, 1/2 cup chopped sugar snap peas, 1/4 cup minced Thai basil

  • Directions:

    1. Place all ingredients for the dressing, aside from the water, in a blender and purée until smooth. Then, add water as needed to thin dressing as needed (based on preferences).
    2. Sliced green onions and add to a salad bowl with cabbage and cilantro. Toss to combine. Top with sesame seeds and peanuts.
    3. Drizzle with about 1/3 to 1/2 cup peanut sauce, or to taste.

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    Truffle Balsamic Vinaigrette

    Truffle Balsamic Vinaigrette

    Not everyone is a fan of truffle — it’s one of those love/hate flavors, where people seem to fall on one side of the fence or another. And I freaking love it. Truffle oil is just this magical extra oomph that takes something from normal to "oh this is amazing.”

    Like many good things, the trick is not using too much. If you’re about to eat truffle oil by the spoonful you should buckle up — that would be a LOT in one bite! In this vinaigrette, truffle oil is combined with olive oil which makes a salad dressing with just the right amount of truffle.

    In a rush, and throwing together a salad to take with me to work, I’ll often just drizzle some oil and vinegar over top of some veggies and call it good, but when I actually take the time to make a real vinaigrette it makes such a big difference (and, you can keep a jar of this dressing in the fridge for a week: time saver!).

    But this vinaigrette isn’t just any old vinaigrette…yes, it has truffle oil, but there’s more! More, in the form of:

    • Dijon mustard. It adds a bit of creaminess and the flavor of mustard is nice and sharp, adding just a tiny bit of punch to the vinaigrette

    • Shallot. Like mustard, shallot just adds a bit of extra zing. Shallots are like onions but way more mellow, and won’t leave your mouth with that “I just ate a plate full of red onion” flavor

    • Salt & Pepper. Easy peasy — but does make a difference.

    If you’re feeling extra fancy, you could add a teaspoon of minced fresh rosemary, thyme, or basil. A dash of red pepper flakes is perfect for anyone that likes a little extra heat.

    Truffle Balsamic Vinaigrette
    Truffle Balsamic Vinaigrette

    Like I said above, I like balsamic vinaigrettes (with or without truffle) on almost any salad, but here are five I recommend:

    1. Spinach salad with butternut & figs

    2. Late fall salad

    3. Arugula, peach and piquillo pepper salad

    4. Winter salad with kale apples

    5. And of course… a simple caprese salad, or like in the video below, cherry tomatoes and fresh mozzarella over arugula. YUM!

    If you don’t see the video player below, click here to watch, or scroll down for the full recipe.

    Truffle Balsamic Vinaigrette

    Published February 7, 2018 by
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    Serves: 8   |    Active Time: 10 minutes



    Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons truffle oil (look for an olive oils infused with truffle)
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

  • Directions:

    1. Combine all ingredients in a jar with a tight fitting lid. Shake to combine.
    2. Drizzle over salad of choice.
    3. Store in fridge for up to 1 week.

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    Moroccan Spiced Carrot Salad (Paleo & Vegan)

    Moroccan Carrot Salad is a quick recipe: only 4 real salad components, if you don’t count the spices that give it that Moroccan flare. Carrots, parsley, raisins, and lemon vinaigrette. Then, ground cumin, coriander, paprika, cayenne, and cinnamon pop in and dress it up. Thanks to those spices, this carrot salad really stands out. 

    To my surprise, little baby carrot heads were popping out from the surface of our garden beds back in early March. They were from seeds planted last year, ones that didn’t sprout before the season ended. And somehow, they grew on through snow and frost and unpredictable Colorado spring weather... hardy little plants to say the least! I’m planning to xeriscape our front yard this year, and build brand new garden boxes, so I’ll likely have to wipe them out before they get fully grow, but maybe they’ll have enough time to grow into baby carrots before then. 

    Carrots are a hardy after they’re picked, too: you can make this the day before, and then drizzle on the vinaigrette at the last minute. The carrots won’t get soggy in the fridge overnight. 

    I use a food processor (affiliate link) with a shredding attachment to shred the carrots — I do not have the patience to do that by hand! 

    This is the perfect side to Moroccan Beef Kabobs, or Lamb & Winter Squash Tagine.

    Moroccan Spiced Carrot Salad

    Published April 17, 2018 by
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    Serves: 6   |    Total Time: 20 minutes



    Ingredients:

    • 3 to 4 cups shredded carrots
    • 1/3 cup minced parsley
    • 1/3 cup raisins
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground paprika
    • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 4 dashes ground cayenne
    • Juice from 2 lemons
    • 1 garlic clove
    • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
    • 1/8 teaspoon salt

    Directions:

    1. Place shredded carrots in a bowl with minced parsley and raisins. Add cumin coriander, paprika, cinnamon, and cayenne and toss.
    2. Make vinaigrette: Mince the garlic and add it to a jar with the lemon juice, olive oil, and salt. Shake to combine. (Makes enough dressing for 2-3 salads). Drizzle about 1/3 of vinaigrette over salad, or to taste. Toss and serve!

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