Friday, August 2, 2013

Asian Cabbage Salad

Yesterday I was alone for dinner. Not wanting to make a big production and cook, I decided to keep it light and have a few salads. I love eating this way, and in my quest to avoid sitting too much, I decided to eat everything standing up in the kitchen. It was great. Can’t get away with that with people around!

I love pickled vegetables like sauerkraut, beets, pickles of course, cauliflower and carrots and whatever else is good pickled. My dad and sister recently visited the Kruegermann warehouse and bought a bunch (as in 30 jars’ worth) of pickled vegetables. From that shopping experience, I was fortunate to receive a jar of beets that are out of this world. If you like beets, I highly suggest you seek out Kruegermann’s. If you’re on the fence about beets, again I suggest you get a jar of these babies. They will change your mind. Their brine includes just the right amount of sweetness to balance the acidity of the vinegar that’s added so that you don’t end up with a mouth-puckering product. This German-based company has been making pickles and other pickled foods since 1896. They know what they’re doing. Go to their website to find a local retailer.

My first salad was a mesclun (baby greens) mix on which I placed a hefty supply of Kruegermann’s sliced beets, some crumbled goat cheese and a handful of walnuts. First I made a balsamic vinaigrette to coat my leaves, then added all the goodies on top. This is one of my favorite salads in the world. Everything works so well together and it's so super healthy.

Rice vermicelli
For my next concoction, I had a few Asian ingredients on hand and decided to make a slaw out of them. I cooked some thin rice noodles (vermicelli) I had broken into a more manageable size, then added veggies, seeds, oil and vinegar to it. Since I didn’t follow a recipe, but rather threw things together, I’m not listing quantities. Here it is.

Asian Cabbage Salad

Rice vermicelli, broken into 3” long pieces, cooked and drained
Green cabbage, shredded
Green onions, chopped
Sesame oil
Rice wine vinegar
Sesame seeds
Sliced almonds
Salt & pepper to taste

Cook the noodles according to the directions on the package. Drain and allow to cool. Place noodles in a salad bowl, add the shredded cabbage and scallions, drizzle with a little sesame oil and squirt with a few squirts of vinegar. Taste. Add more of whatever is needed. Then scatter a few spoons of sesame seeds and almonds over the lot, add salt and pepper to taste, toss and taste again. Make adjustments, if necessary. If you want a little bit of kick, add a few red pepper flakes. Enjoy!

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