I’m into layering. Not just in my clothing options—yes, I’m a big fan of piling on the tank, then the shirt, then the sweater, jacket or blazer—but also when it comes to cooking.
Layering flavors and textures in a dish—and even an entire menu—is the sign of an adventurous and accomplished home cook. The cook that takes the uneven path and changes our anticipated cravings with a little extra crunch or flavorful zing is the cook that delivers memorable meals. And by memorable I do not mean complicated or over worked. Just. Good. Food.
I’ve been partial to this mindset ever since I can remember when my favorite after-school snack was crunchy Triscuits topped with creamy liverwurst—hey, I’m German, what can I say? A tuna fish sandwich wasn’t complete without a layer of crunchy potato chips and puckerey kosher pickles. It was all about the texture combos for me, and it still is.
Cabbage is the perfect example of an ingredient that can use an extra oomph, a little push to the flavorful side.
We grilled out for Father’s Day this past weekend and my man requested coleslaw. Rather than go with the classic mayo-laden slaw you’ll most often find in grocery store deli cases, I wanted a slaw that had microbursts of flavor and even more crunch.
First off I ditched the mayo for vinegar for a cleaner taste that complemented the crunch of the veggies.
Then I added green, leafy kale—the hearty cabbage’s cousin and ingredient darling thanks to its anti-cancer properties and high vitamin content. It’s ribboned leaves created a visual change-up not always found in slaw.
Did I mention how healthy it is?
Another layer of crunch came from carrots (more beta carotene), red bell pepper (high in lycopene and another cancer fighter) and my favorite ingredient of the moment Marcona almonds (a great source of protein and rich in Vitamin E which helps lower the bad cholesterol we all carry along with us.)
Yep its a healthy side dish. But tasty. Super tasty.
I served it on the side with grilled chicken breasts but will definitely break it out as a topper for Sloppy Joes or pulled pork sandwiches.
And you can bet I won’t forget the potato chips.
Oh, how I love the crunch, the clean flavors of this recipe. But sometimes my menu calls for a little change-up. Mix and match my fellow food bloggers recipes below to create a coleslaw fit for any style of cuisine.
It looks like kimchee, it’s spicy like kimchee, but it’s not. It’s Korean Style Spicy Slaw from Joanne of Week of Menus.
As we traverse through Southeast Asia, check out how Jenna puts an Asian spin on the crunch-a-munch coleslaw fété with a bit o’ soy, sesame and rice vinegar with Eat Live Run‘s Spicy Asian Slaw
Elizabeth of Guilty Kitchen has created a light and licorice-ey flavored super crunch salad with Apple Fennel Slaw.
As we continue our coleslaw ’round the world tour, check out Sprout‘s Greek Coleslaw featuring Savoy cabbage, olives and feta, a lively combo that Ashley assures will keep in the fridge for a week.
Looking for a bright red tongue? Look no further than Faith’s Cabbage Beet Coleslaw, dotted with flavors of orange and honey from The Kitchn.