Lemony Slaw

Lemony Slaw

I was thinking about slaw for a while before Gigi posted some she made one her new series Now Gigi Serves Dinner! Once I saw that I knew it was time to stop thinking about it and just make it.

There was a time when I wouldn’t even think about making it.  Heck, I wouldn’t even eat it.  Then again, the only slaw I ever had was from that chicken giant.  I lived behind another fried chicken joint franchise for a time after college.  It was one of the few things that I ever ordered spicy.  The chicken, I mean.  One day, I decided to try their slaw.  I.  Loved.  It.  Go figure.

I’ve been a lover of slaw since then.  Still not fond of that one chicken giant, but I’m sure it’s full of preservatives anyway.  I think the only slaw I’ve had that I didn’t like was from the cafeteria at one of my jobs.  The dietary staff put together this gourmet lunch for us at the beginning of the school year and one of the guys made a slaw.  I hit it with gusto, but something just didn’t taste right.  It was bleu cheese dressing.  Ack.  I set that aside.

Monday was my grocery day and I came home all excited about making slaw that night for dinner.  I go in to the kitchen later and my food processor decides it’s going on strike.  It would not run with the slicer or shredder attachment.  Not even a little groan.  I even looked it up online and couldn’t figure out how to get it to work for me.  I put it aside and pulled out the mandoline.  My fancy little gadget gives me nothing but trouble.  I say fancy because it will do more than just slice.  It will dice and julienne 3 different sizes each.

I get started and things are going well.  Or so I thought.  Somehow huge chunks of food are getting through, the julienned pieces aren’t coming apart.  It was a mess.  I was frustrated and saying a few choice 4 letter words.  This wasn’t 5 minutes I wasted.  It was nearly an hour and all I had was badly cut cabbage and radishes to show for my trouble.  Or the show of my trouble.  I threw down the towel and left the kitchen.  Just looking at my knife made me fear hurting myself trying to hand cut everything with the level of emotion I had going on.  This was disaster #3 in a week’s time.  My nerves were shot.

I texted Chaz and asked him to pick something up for dinner.  He brought me Chipotle.  He’s the man.

Tuesday morning I spent hours in the kitchen prepping my breakfasts for the week (I’m hoping to get it up and ready for this month’s Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten-free event), dinner for that night (including the slaw), and veggies for soup on Wednesday (I want to be able to just throw everything in the slow cooker before I left for work).   The whole time I was just praying that my concept for the slaw turn out like I was thinking of it in my head.

I tossed all the veggies and let them sit in the fridge until I was ready to eat.  I was in love again.  This is a tart slaw, but not overly tart.  I did not sweeten it with anything and instead relied on the jicama to bring just a hint of sweetness to it.

Lemony Slaw, serves 4

1/4 head red cabbage, sliced thin

2 carrots, julienned

6 radishes, julienned

2 stalks celery, julienned

2 slices of jicama, julienned

1 avocado, diced

1/2 lemon, juiced

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon celery seed

dash of salt

sliced almonds, optional

Toss the produce together in a large bowl.  If you are making this ahead of time, wait to add the avocado until you are getting ready to serve.  Whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, celery seed, and salt.  The dressing will emulsify as you whisk it.  Pour dressing over the slaw and toss well.  Garnish with sliced almonds on the plate if desired.

In The Raw

Raw Veggie Spring Rolls

I’ve been trying to consciously do at least one meatless meal per week.  The day would vary and a few weeks ago, I figured it was high time I adopted Mario Batali’s Meatless Monday to ensure I did it week after week.  I know the idea isn’t solely his, but he is the first person I saw promoting Meatless Monday.

So, last week, I decided to make Raw Veggie Spring Rolls.   The Loving Cafe makes them, but calls them Summer Rolls.  It’s my favorite thing on their menu.  Bonus, if there is one near you, they have identified the gluten-free items on their menu.  I never really thought about making them until I saw them made on Bitchin’ Kitchen.  I had never watched the show before.  My husband likes it and made me sit down to watch when he saw it was on one afternoon.  I don’t even remember the ingredients she used because I was too busy dreaming up my own.

I intended to come up with my very own dipping sauce for these.  But, if you follow me on Facebook, you’ll know that’s the day I made the bacon jam.  As soon as I tasted the bacon jam, I knew it would be a perfect accompaniment to the Raw Veggie Spring Rolls.  It was slightly sweet, vinegary, and meaty.

So much for Meatless Monday last week.

Add a dollop of bacon jam!

What I love about Raw Veggie Spring Rolls is that you can put almost any raw veggie in one.  I’m already thinking about using jicama and avocado the next time.  Another great thing is you can use either the rice paper wrappers or just use leafy green lettuce.  No, not iceberg lettuce.  I said leafy green lettuce.  Bibb, Romaine, Green Leaf, Red Leaf, etc.  All it takes is a little imagination to come up with your own.  Raw Veggie Spring Rolls also give you the opportunity to have the entire rainbow of nutrition in one sitting.  Taste the rainbow!  No, put down the Skittles and pick up a Raw Veggie Spring Roll.

Raw Veggie Spring Rolls

Rice spring roll wrappers

Spinach

Red & Yellow Bell Pepper, julienned

Cucumber, seeded & julienned

2 Carrots, peeled & julienned

1/4 head red cabbage, shredded

Cilantro

Prepare the rice wrappers according to the package directions as you are preparing each spring roll.  After blotting the wrapper, add 3-5 leaves of spinach (depending on the size of each leaf just above the bottom third of the wrapper.  Build on top of the spinach with the cilantro, shredded cabbage, peppers, carrots, & cucumber.  Pull the bottom third of the wrapper up and over the veggies and tighten it up.  Roll once, then fold the side ends over.  Continue rolling.  There is no need to use anything special to seal the wrapper.  It will seal on its own.  Serve with your favorite dipping sauce.  Or bacon jam…

This post is linked to Seasonal Sunday at Real Sustenance.