Of all the root cellar vegetables, cabbage has a long and varied history. It was an important food during the Dark Ages, and by the Middle Ages, abundant in both peasant and wealthy cuisines. For those of use who eat primarily Maine foods, cabbage is the workhorse of the winter kitchen.
Solid, firm heads of cabbage keep well in a root cellar at 32 – 38 degrees F. Green cabbage, which has a white center, stores longer than red cabbage. The vibrant maroon leaves of red cabbage turn blue-purple when cooked, and they have a tougher texture. However, as a color accent in a salad, red cabbage has no rival.
During the dark, winter months, cabbage is the backbone of winter salads and stir-frys. The crisp leaves melt into sweet tenderness with cooked slowly in soups, or braised with beer. Cabbage with sausages, white beans with cabbage, grated cabbage as a filling for spring rolls, egg rolls and dumplings, pickled into sauerkraut, the versatile cabbage has no rival.
We Americans enjoy cabbage primarily as a coleslaw, a salad of fresh, shredded cabbage with a mayonnaise type dressing. The recipe for Bread and Butter Coleslaw uses sweet pickle chips as the flavoring for a yogurt based dressing. The sweetness of the cabbage when combined the creamy, sweet dressing makes this crunchy salad quite addictive.
Bread and Butter Coleslaw is a snap to prepare with a food processor or good, sharp knife, and this salad will store well for several days in the refrigerator. Stuff it in a pocket with thinly sliced smoked turkey for a delicious sandwich, or enjoy as a side dish Packed with Vitamins C, K and B6 and good source of minerals, cabbage should be on everyone’s winter vegetable list.
COLESLAW WITH CREAMY PICKLE DRESSING
- 3 cups thinly shredded cabbage combination of red & green is pretty
- 1 carrot peeled and grated
- ½ cup chopped onion
- ½ cup pickles and brine
- 2 tablespoons plain yogurt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon Sea salt
- ½ teaspoon fresh pepper
- Assemble ingredients and tools.
- Shred the cabbage, grate the carrot and finely chop the onion.
- Add the prepared veggies to a large bowl.
- To prepare the dressing, add the pickles, yogurt, olive oil, sea salt and fresh pepper to the bowl of your food processor or blender. Process until well combined. (Or finely chop the pickles by hand and mix in a small bowl with the yogurt and olive oil.)
- Stir the dressing into the coleslaw. Season to taste with additional sea salt and fresh pepper if needed.
- Plate and enjoy!