When does a Slaw become a Coleslaw...?
Well. Yes. Of course everything goes up or comes down. And whilst crunchy vegetable side dishes are always going to maintain themselves in some form, the branding and language will always change to reflect new food trends and fashions. The humble coleslaw is no exception. It's been grabbed, gentrified and splattered on your plate with a whole new stamp of hipster approval.
Lets be honest, the word Coleslaw is pretty unsexy. It's associated with those 80s square plastic containers where cabbage and carrot were shredded so finely and mixed with so much dressing they were, let's be frank, more of a soggy paste. A soggy paste reluctantly spooned next to some BBQ Richmond sausages and birds eye quarter pounders.
And like BBQ food, the side dishes have also evolved with different ingredients, different methods and a different audience.
The 'cole' in Coleslaw refers to cabbage. So taking out the cabbage and popping other interesting ingredients in has opened up a whole new world of exciting. As well as brandishing the sexy new shorter name 'slaw'. And of course, for Pear & Potato, exciting on the plate and palate is good. We know how important curiosity and novelty is in enjoying fruit and vegetables so SLAWS are a great place to experiment with fresh raw flavours. And, although yes I am including a recipe here, I think generally recipes are overrated. YOU know what you like, YOU know what's in your fridge and cupboards, and these are the best places to start when playing with food.
As well as playing with flavours, you can try changing the size of the chop. So whether you want to finely grate the ingredients, chop into chunky matchsticks. Or somewhere in between. Dressing can also range from a classic mayonnaise to a more classic oil and vinegar based salad dressing. The former is good for softening favours. The latter for sharpening and showcasing the flavours - and colours - that are already in the dish. And don't forget the toppings. For me, no dish is complete without some sort of sprinkle on the top. For crunch, for sweetness or just because it looks good.
So please do enjoy this recipe as a jumping off point for slaws, or to take your slaw inspiration and experimentation a little further.
Kohlrabi, apple & hazelnut slaw
This slaw is everything I would want in a slaw right now. Not to showy. Absolutely seasonal with kohlrabi, apple and hazelnut all of which are growing, ripe and ready in the UK as we speak. And a big batch will fit perfectly with a couple of dishes we're having this week. It's easy, it's tasty. It was meant to be. A big thank you to my customer Adam Porter for flagging up this magnificent recipe - originally on @loveandlemons
I hope you enjoy it too.
1 crunchy apple
Half red onion
4 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp honey
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
1/2 tsp chilli flakes if you're feeling dangerous.
Plenty of salt and pepper
Handful of hazelnuts
Roughly chop the hazelnuts and put them onto a pan over a medium heat. Keep them moving until they are lightly toasted. Remove from the heat.
Peel the kohlrabi bulb and chop into matchstick sized pieces. Also chop the apple into matchstick sized pieces - it's up to you if you peel first. I don't.
Thinly slice the red onion.
Pop them all in a bowl and mix them up
Put the oil, vinegar, honey, mustard and some seasoning in a jam jar with a lid and shake vigourously whilst you sign Happy Birthday.
Pour the dressing over the other ingredients and mix well, making sure to coat everything. This is for flavour, but also to help slow the apple from browning.
Put in a sexy bowl, sprinkle over the hazelnuts (and optional chilli flakes) and enjoy as a stand out side dish. xx