This recipe was inspired by a dish described to me by Chef Doreen T. Ross. We ”met” through PhamFatale.com and we’ve exchanged several emails about dishes. She recently made a plate of very successful fish tacos that used cabbage coleslaw instead of the more traditional choice of lettuce. Doreen made her coleslaw with a buttermilk ranch dressing that sounded delectable. I had to try it myself, so today I tried to recreate the coleslaw that Doreen described to me as a stand alone dish.
I adapted the recipe so the vegetarians in the house could partake, which means there are no eggs. If that’s not an issue for you, a standard egg-based ranch dressing would work fine. To make vegetarian ranch dressing, I usually incorporate silken tofu, but as I started working on the dish I realized that I had bought the wrong kind at the store. I had liquid soy lecithin and xanthan gum in my pantry, so I used those instead. If you’re familiar with egg-free recipes, xanthan gum and lecithin are an excellent egg substitute.
I didn’t think my first iteration of the buttermilk ranch dressing had enough of a kick on its own, so I melted blue cheese and added champagne vinegar to the mix. Because of its rich color, shredded raw red cabbage seemed like the right canvas to showcase the light-colored dressing. I paired the cabbage with cubed Granny Smith apples for a little sweetness and additional color contrast.
The result is an unexpectedly complex and flavorful dish. It was a big success at my house, so I have to say thanks again to Chef Doreen for the tip!
1. Info for Red Cabbage Coleslaw with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
- Cook Time: unavailable
- Total Time: unavailable
- Servings: 10
- Calories: unavailable
2. Ingredients for Red Cabbage Coleslaw with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
- 1 red cabbage
- 2 tablespoons caramelized onions
- ½ Granny Smith apple
- ¼ cup champagne vinegar
- 2 ounces blue cheese, coarsely crumbled
- ¼ teaspoon xanthan gum
- ¼ teaspoon olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon liquid lecithin
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon agave nectar
- ½ teaspoon dry mustard
- 2 teaspoons granulated garlic (garlic powder)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons crème fraîche (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon white pepper, finely ground
- 1 teaspoon garlic chives, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon French tarragon, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon sweet basil, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon flat-leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped
- 2 sprigs flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
- Peel, core and dice the apple. Coat the diced apples in 1 tablespoon of champagne vinegar to prevent oxidation of the fruit. Place the crumbled blue cheese in a small saucepan and melt the cheese over low heat. Add the cheese to the buttermilk. Whisk well. In a bowl, combine the xanthan gum, ½ teaspoon of olive oil and liquid lecithin. Add the blue cheese-flavored buttermilk to the xanthan gum / lecithin mixture. The sauce will thicken. Whisk well. Add the agave nectar, dry mustard, 1 tablespoon champagne vinegar, crème fraîche and granulated garlic. Season with salt and white pepper. Finish with the blend of herbs.
- Prepping the cabbage: Quarter the cabbage through the root. Thinly shred the cabbage using the appropriate blade of a food processor or a mandoline. Gather the cabbage in a large bowl. Add the rest of the champagne vinegar. Toss thoroughly. Set aside for about 10-20 minutes. Drain and discard all the liquid.
- Add the buttermilk ranch salad dressing, caramelized onions and cubed apples to the shredded cabbage. Toss well. Garnish with parsley.
- Bon appétit!