It all begins with the humble cabbage. We love all things cruciferous around here – kale (here, here and here), Brussels sprouts, broccoli and cauliflower, but really, the humble cabbage is probably the most under-rated superfood around. It is rarely out-of-season, easy to find and can be used in numerous ways all year round. We use it in dumplings, to make cabbage rolls, and red cabbage cooked with apple is one of our favorite winter accompaniments. But slaw is really where cabbage shines and quite possibly the salad we make most often.
We all know by now how awesome raw produce is for us, however, throughout winter a lettuce salad with tomato and cucumber is the last thing I want to eat (not to mention the ingredients are non-existent in the winter garden). So to get our daily dose of greens I often make a large bowl of slaw to last us several days. The key is not to add the dressing and avocado until serving or it will go soggy and, dare I say, slimy! If like me you can’t quite stomach a cold green smoothie during the depths of winter, then this hearty winter slaw is one the best ways to give yourself a boost. Cruciferous vegetables are bursting with vitamin C and other fabulous immune supporting nutrients.
Now before I share the recipe, I feel it worth a mention that cabbage needs a little attention to detail if you want to digest it well and avoid the gassy-ness it is renowned for. Similar to making a kale salad (and something I have been doing well before I even tried kale salad), a little loving massage first to soften up the tough insoluble fibre will make digestion so much easier. It may not work for everyone, but worth a try if you avoid eating raw cabbage for this reason. Just start with a small amount and see how you go. Happy mid-winter boost everyone!
1/2 large cabbage, thinly shredded
generous pinch of sea salt
1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced - I use a mandolin
8 Brussels sprouts, thinly sliced - I used a mandolin again
1 orange, skin removed and cut into small cubes
1/2 cup chopped slow-roasted hazelnuts (or other nuts - walnuts, Brazil nuts, almonds)
perfectly-ripe diced avocado to serve
juice of 1 lemon
juice of 1 orange
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon raw honey
pinch of salt
1/4 cup olive oil
- Place the thinly sliced cabbage in a large bowl and add the salt (about 1/4 teaspoon). Use you hands to scrunch and massage the cabbage strips until they soften and reduced in bulk by about half. This will take about 2-3 minutes. Toss through the sliced fennel, Brussels sprouts, chopped nuts and diced orange. (At this stage you can store the salad in a covered bowl in the fridge.)
- Combine the dressing ingredients in a jar and shake to combine.
- Dress the salad just prior to serving and scatter with diced avocado.