When I asked Alex what he wanted besides ribs for his birthday dinner, he asked for curly french fries (I bought them frozen and then totally forgot to bake them that night. Ah well – we had them at lunch the next day.) and some cole slaw “so you and Daddy have something that you won’t have to share.” He’s not a fan of slaw – particularly any mayo-based versions. But that’s okay – it was his birthday. I wasn’t about to force anything on him. And I knew his main focus would be the ribs anyway.
So I decided to make a slaw using whatever we could to pull from the garden.
I started with pea pods – both the usual green and the Blue Podded Blauwschokkers. Because of the weather, all the peas are finishing up about now – leaves dying from the bottom up, and the slender pods starting to bulge with peas.
I was happy that some of the skinny pods had gone unnoticed by any of us – I like peas when they’re very young and very fresh like this. They’re sweet and delicious, with none of the starchy texture you find in older peas.
I julienned the thinner pods, peas still inside, and in the case of the thicker, more pregnant-looking pods, I popped the peas out and put the tougher pods in our compost bucket.
Those are the julienned pods, above, and underneath are the very tender inner core of a few broccoli stalks.
Bill pulled the broccoli plants out – the ones that didn’t seem inclined to produce the actual broccoli floret buds, cut off the leaves, and brought the remaining stalks in to me.
I cut them down to a smaller size, peeled the tougher outer skin off, and then cut these into rough matchsticks.
The leaves and trimmings went, of course, out to the compost.
We also picked a bunch of baby bok choi (or pak choi), a couple of mountain spinach leaves (the purple ones), some mizuna (the skinny leaves that look a bit like flames – pointy and sharp), skinny kohlrabi leaves, and some radishes.
I cut the radishes up small and thin as well.
And then, after cleaning them, I julienned the rest of the greens.
So pretty, isn’t it? And such a nice assortment of textures, flavors and colors.
Oh – wait, I also see little bits of early carrots in there. Didn’t mean to forget them!
Okay, next it was time to make the dressing.
I’ll give you approximate measurements, as I didn’t measure anything. I just spooned in some of this, sprinkled in some of that. Added salt and pepper to taste.
But here goes -
Garden Slaw Dressing – makes a little over 1 cup
About half a cup of mayo
About 3/4 of a cup of plain, Greek-style yogurt
Around 2 tablespoons of chopped chives
1/2 a teaspoon of dried tarragon (I had some in a dish on the counter, so in it went)
About 1/4 cup of crumbled Feta and some of the brine
Salt and pepper
Mix everything together, taste, add additional seasoning if desired.
There, that’s about it. You can substitute in other herbs, add garlic, omit the Feta – whatever suits you.
Then I just tossed the dressing with all the slaw ingredients and put the whole thing, covered, in the fridge until dinner time.
I love this kind of food prep – just using whatever’s on hand. Next time I make a garden slaw, it will be completely different. The peas are gone now, and the broccoli won’t be around much longer, either.
But we’ll have more carrots, maybe, and other greens. Maybe some beans. Maybe some kohlrabi.
Time will tell….