Cabbage is a cruciferous vegetable, one that contains the antioxidants beta carotene and the compound sulforaphane. It is high in fiber and contains a good amount of vitamin C and some vitamin A, both eye-health vitamins. This Asian-inspired slaw recipe keeps the vegetables raw and the antioxidants more abundant (cooking reduces the concentration of them in food). With the use of a peanut butter dressing, we get Vitamin E, another great antioxidant that may help in the prevention of cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. And don’t forget the garlic – it is rich in sulfur which is essential for keeping the lenses of your eyes strong and resilient.
For the dressing:
- 6 tbsp rice vinegar (not the seasoned kind)
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- 5 tbsp creamy peanut butter
- 3 tbsp soy or tamari sauce
- 3 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp minced, peeled fresh ginger
- 1 1/2 tbsp minced garlic
- A pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
For the salad:
- 1 package pre-shredded green & purple cabbage blend with carrots
- 2 large red bell peppers, cut into matchstick-size strips
- 1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- Either 1/4 cup chopped peanuts OR 1-2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
In a blender or food processor, mix the dressing ingredients together to form a smooth dressing. This can be made a day ahead. Cover and chill. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes before using.
When ready, combine the remaining salad ingredients in a large bowl. Add the dressing to taste and toss to coat. (Mix in half of the dressing first; add more if needed.) Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.
Recipe NotesThis salad is best served the day it is made. If you think you are not going to eat it all, only dress the portion of the salad you plan on eating that day and repeat the process for the next batch of salad. If you have leftover dressing, it is great tossed with room temperature spaghetti noodles or use the dressing as a chicken sate dipping sauce. Try it with a bag of pre-sliced broccoli slaw mix. For some extra crunch, add some matchstick-size strips of peeled jicama. You can always increase the ginger, garlic or crushed red pepper flakes to taste. You can substitute 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar for the honey. Use all vegetable or all sesame oil instead of the mix.