Rainbow Super Slaw
Cabbage is such an underrated ingredient. Kale gets all the love, spinach is perennially popular, but cabbage – it never steals the limelight! Which is crazy I think, because it really is one of my favourite veges. Easy to find, super affordable, and happily prepared raw, massaged, fermented or cooked. Last night for example we enjoyed it braised with baby leeks, perpetual spinach and spring onion (all from my Dad’s garden here in Te Kuiti, served alongside some sweet tamari tempeh, brown rice, these Tamari Sesame Karengo Almonds and this Japanese-inspired Chilli Furikake sprinkle here – so deliriously good).
Other times I’ll massage it with some finely shredded cavolo nero (Tuscan kale), olive oil, apple cider vinegar, and salt for an easy and quick side salad. When I get a bit more time on the weekend, I might sprinkle it with salt and stuff it into large glass jars to make homemade sauerkraut. But most often I’ll leave it simply raw as in this delicious Rainbow Super Slaw – thinly sliced, tossed with a rainbow of other crunchy vege, doused in a creamy dairy-free dressing, and topped with crunchy activated seeds. Summer salad perfection.
I’ve always loved a good coleslaw, but often times you find it in the deli aisle looking a little uninspired, and doused in a dairy, egg and sugar heavy dressing. As a result, the old ‘slaw has a pretty bad rap in foodie circles. A good coleslaw though can be one of the most delicious, quick and affordable things you can make, and a fabulous alternative to your regular side salad routine. The keys to making your perfect coleslaw I believe are four fold…
- A rainbow of fresh crunchy vege,
- A creamy flavour packed dressing,
- Some crunchy more-ish seeds on top, and
- A grated apple for a dash of sweetness (tip from my mother in law – it really makes it!)
And so this ravishing Rainbow Super Slaw creates that perfect combo, with our star cabbage in green and red, carrots, spring onion, capsicum, fresh parsley and chives, that sneaky green apple, crunchy activated pumpkin, sunflower and watermelon seeds, and a delicious dairy free mayo. Yes this lovely slaw is…
- Done in 10 minutes,
- No fancy ingredients,
- Brimming with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, calcium and protein,
- Daringly dairy free yet perfectly creamy, and
- The perfect accompaniment to your next summer meal
Cabbage – the cruciferous underdog
Our hero cabbage is a member of the infamous brassica family, which also includes broccoli, cauliflower, kale, collard greens and brussels sprouts. Cabbages are packed full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds, with almost 20 different flavonoids and 15 different phenols having been identified. All of which help us against free radical damage and ageing. Numerous studies have also shown that the consumption of this finely bulb of green to help prevent numerous diseases including type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Green cabbage is full of chlorophyll and calcium, particularly in the green outer leaves. Red cabbage meanwhile has the addition of anthocyanin polyphenols which have added antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. The red variety has a more bitter and earthy flavour, whilst green (or white as it’s sometimes called) cabbage is much more sweet and tender. So in recipes like this one, I recommend using two parts green to one part red to keep your flavours balanced.
Cabbage is also a ridiculously good source of vitamin C (not just oranges eh!). A single 100g serve contains 37mg of this antioxidant rich and iron-absorption enhancing vitamin, equating to over 82% of our recommended daily intake. It’s also a fabulous source of vitamin K, a little known but important vitamin that helps our blood to clot (important if we’re injured, or in a car crash). Again one 100g serve (easy to achieve) provides over 108% (or 76ug) of our daily recommended requirements.
The last thing I love about cabbage, is it’s cheap! That’s right, a real every day superfood. Cabbage is very easy to find in the supermarket or farmers markets, it keeps for weeks in the fridge, different types grow all year round, and it’s really economical. In fact, a study by the USDA showed it to be one of the most affordable vegetables per gram, second only to potatoes!
I hope you’ll give coleslaw a renewed try with this gorgeous Rainbow Super Slaw. It’s honestly one of my favourite salads to make, and goes with just about anything. If you’ve got a food processor with a slicing attachment or a mandoline, feel free to use those to slice up your veges. I don’t though, so make this just with a simple knife and chopping board. You will need a blender for the dairy-free mayo dressing, but can easily make double to make it worth your while and use the leftovers the rest of the week on other salads and dishes.
If you make this delicious Rainbow Super Slaw, I’d love to hear what you think – and especially if it makes you fall in love with slaw again! Leave me a comment below, take a pic and tag me over on Instagram (use both @begoodorganics and #begoodorganics in the main caption so I don’t miss you). Or share your photos over on my Facebook page here.
It’s mid afternoon now and I’m out on Dad’s deck enjoying the beautiful countryside in Te Kuiti. Rolling hills, birds chirping, a few solitary cows, and herds of sheep roaming past. Plus a rough old farm cat called Kenzo wandering through the high grass, tail in the air. It’s so lovely to get some fresh country air before we head back to Auckland in a week’s time.
Hope you’ve relaxed back into your regular routine if you’re back at work, and are still retaining that new found summer glow from your break just been. Wishing you a gorgeous rest of your Friday, a lovely weekend, and as always til next week, stay happy and well.
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Please note – if you are wanting to meet any of the specific dietary requirements below, please read my recipe notes.
Rainbow Super Slaw
- 1/4 green cabbage
- 1/8 red cabbage
- 2 carrots
- 2 spring onions
- 1 red capsicum
- 1 green apple
- Handful of parsley and chives
- 1/2 c cashews
- 3/4 c water
- 3 tbsp lemon juice
- 1/2 shallot
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 c pumpkin seeds sunflower seeds and watermelon seeds (dried activated)
- Finely slice all veges except the parsley and chives and put in a bowl - I love using a Benriner Mandoline for this to keep it speedy! Then, the apple I grate, the rest I simply slice with a knife. For the parsley and chives, finely chop them and add.
- Blend the dressing ingredients in a high speed blender until super smooth, then add to the vege bowl along with the seeds.
- Mix thoroughly and serve, sprinkled with extra seeds and chopped herbs if desired.
- This salad is super versatile, and you can use whatever veges you have to hand to make it colourful. Just think rainbow, then add as you please. Other additions that are lovely are red onion, orange or yellow capsicum, pink radishes, snow peas, and finely sliced green beans. Herb subs can include coriander or mint (delicious). Or swap your green apple for a red one, or a very firm pear.
- For the seed blend, I love using a combination of sunflower, watermelon and pumpkin seeds, but you can use whatever you have to hand, or choose your favourite nuts.
- I like to use dried and activated seeds, as they're easily digested, have the phytic acid removed, and are super crunchy and delicious. I make these in large batches once a month or so and store in glass jars, ready to use on salads like these. You can buy pre-activated seeds from our online store here. Otherwise, you can simply top this salad with raw seeds, or better yet, lightly toast them in a pan on a low heat for 5 or so minutes until just slightly golden. Toasting/roasting is the next best option after soaking activating and drying, but I'm not adverse to throwing some raw ones on top if I'm in a hurry - so feel free to do this if it's easier for you!
- To make this salad completely nut-free, simply swap the cashews in the Mayo dressing for sunflower seeds or watermelon seeds.