While I love bacon-wrapped hot dogs and potato chips more than anyone, I know that these summertime party going food staples are not healthy for me. Coleslaw has the potential to be a super food, super party staple, but often it is drowning in mass produced mayonnaise that contains RoundUp Ready Canola or soy oil as a main ingredient and not much flavor to create any complexity or contrast.
Like most food that we buy pre-package and pre-made, mayonnaise or its more tasty and elegant partner, aioli, are easy sauces to make, and most people have base ingredients for these sauces easily accessible. When you make the coleslaw’s sauce yourself, you can control the quality of the ingredients, most importantly the quality of the oil. Aioli does take about 7-10 minutes to make, but the time gets shorter if you have practiced making it. Once you have it down, this is a versatile sauce that you can use for many backyard grill parties and whip up in no time.
Coleslaw’s main ingredient is cabbage, which hosts a wealth of health benefits. By slicing the cabbage, you release its anti-oxidant properties. Coleslaw contains a significant amount of insoluble fiber as well, making it the perfect companion to the bacon-wrapped hot dog because it will cleanly and efficiently send that cured meat through your system (smile).
4 cups shredded green cabbage
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt, and to taste
1/3 cup homemade aioli* (see recipe below)
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
½ teaspoon smoky paprika
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon lemon juice, and to taste
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
salt, to taste
1. Place the egg yolk, lemon juice, lemon zest, and a pinch of salt in a food processor.
2. Briefly blend the ingredients until they form an emulsion, and then slowlydrizzle in the extra virgin olive oil with the processor on. Start by adding the oil drop by drop as the processor blade turns. Once 40% of the oil is emulsified, you can speed up the rate at which you add the oil, but don’t go too fast or the mixture will break.
3. When all of the oil is emulsified, check the sauce for salt and acidity. Add salt as necessary. If you need more acidity, just add another splash of lemon juice.
4. Set the sauce aside. You can prepare the sauce a day ahead of time—if you do prepare it ahead of time, store it in the refrigerator and take it out about 30 minutes before serving to bring it up to room temperature. Do not let it sit out of the refrigerator for more than an hour.
1. Use a mandolin, thin slicer on your food processor, or a very sharp knife to thinly shred the cabbage.
2. Place the cabbage in a stainless steel bowl, add in the lemon juice and salt, and stir it well to ensure that the ingredients are evenly distributed.
3. Let the cabbage, salt, and juice mingle for an hour.
4. About 30 minutes before serving the coleslaw, mix in the red pepper flakes
and smoky paprika, and stir all of the ingredients together.
5. Set the coleslaw aside until you are ready to serve it. If it is a hot day or you need to wait longer than an hour to serve the dish, put the slaw in the refrigerator until about 15-20 minutes before you are ready to serve it.