What can I say? This salad is ah-mazing! And beautiful! It’s sooo colorful! And filling. It’s its own meal. Or a fabulous side dish. Preparation is extremely fast (as long as you’re not photographing the entire process all while assuring your starving teenage daughter that it will be ready soon, knowing full-well you’re lying because you’ve still got at least three more stages to photograph before you get to your final plating and hope the good natural light lasts until then.)
I’m sorry. You’re hungry? Right. Moving along.
Lately I’ve gotten several very nice recipes off thekitchn website and appreciate they’re offering vegan-friendly fare. Their photography is always top-notch and I always enjoy perusing their recipes for the pictures if for no other reason.
I think my favorite aspect of this salad is the great blend of crunchy flavors that are enhanced by the very subtle vinaigrette you’ll be making to pour over the entire bowl. Oh – and this will require a large bowl; it’s a LOT* of salad. I’ve been giving mine away by the bowlful because I know we won’t be able to finish eating it before those pretty lettuce leaves start to wilt a bit.
I used a food processor to get my cabbage as thin as I wanted. You can easily use a knife to accomplish the same thing; it will stain your hands purple, though (#CabbageJoy). I prepped the rest of my vegetables and fruit with my chefs knife.
There’s not really any magic to this salad. Just prep your ingredients, dump them all into a big bowl, stir to combine and then mix your vinaigrette. Pour, stir, serve. Voila.
I served mine alongside my daughter’s favorite Boi Potatoes, but I didn’t think it needed anything to go with it. I also think this salad would be a beautiful addition to a potluck because it’s already got the dressing on it and you can easily place the pepitas in a small bowl for a self-serve garnish.
What are your favorite fast salads to use as a meal?
*It occurred to me that I didn’t follow the recipe (shocking) listed below. That’s why I got so much salad. I just eyeballed everything. SO. If you want a whole lot of salad and not just 4-6 servings, then chop up the entire cabbage (I used a very small head), the entire head of lettuce, and 3/4 of the cauliflower, and the entire bunch of green onions, and a couple of monster-sized carrots and a jumbo apple and you’ll need to use the biggest Tupperware bowl in your cupboard to contain it – just like me.
Otherwise, just follow the directions and you’ll end up with 4-6 servings that will likely fit into a lovely small dish.
For a quick meal, or a beautiful complement to a heavier main dish, this salad packs so much goodness into every bite. Your body will happily receive all these nutrients masked in delicious flavor and crunch. I love crunchy!
- Red Cabbage - 5 c, thinly sliced (about 1/4 of one medium head)
- Lettuce - 4 oz, torn or sliced into strips
- Apple - 2 medium (crunchy & crisp variety), diced
- Carrot - 2 medium, peeled into ribbons
- Cauliflower - 2 cups, finely chopped
- Scallions - 1/2 cup, thinly sliced (green & white portions)
- Canola, vegetable, safflower or mild nut oil - 3 T
- Veganese (or mayonnaise) - 1 1/2 T
- Brown Sugar (light or dark) - 1 1/2 tsp
- Dijon Mustard - 1/4 tsp
- Apple Cider Vinegar - 3 T
- Sea Salt - pinch
- Black Pepper - 5 grinds
- Pepitas (Pumpkin Seeds) - 1/2 cup, roasted
Combine the cabbage, lettuce, apples, carrots, cauliflower, and scallions in a large serving bowl. Toss several times so that the carrot ribbons tangle with the cabbage shreds and lettuce leaves, and the cubes of apples and bits of cauliflower settle throughout rather than at the bottom of the bowl.
In a small bowl or spouted measuring cup, briskly whisk together the mayonnaise and oil until completely smooth. Add the sugar and mustard and whisk again. Finally, whip in the vinegar, salt, and pepper until the whole of it emulsifies into one dressing. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad, scatter the pepitas into the bowl, and toss again to combine everything. Serve immediately.
If you plan on having leftovers, hold off on the vinaigrette and pepitas, adding those per serving to prevent the salad from becoming soggy and the pepitas from losing their crispy crunch (You can just reserve a portion of the salad for saving, too, and dress the rest for serving immediately). Refrigerate the undressed salad in an airtight container for up to 4 days and store the pepitas in a zip-top bag or container outside of the fridge.