Monday, 27 May 2013

Thai Peanut Slaw

I find most coleslaw pretty disgusting. It's just gloopy, way too sugary, and is made basically with equal parts cabbage and mayonnaise. And sugar. If you're lucky, there might be some carrots thrown in. This can be described in one word: ick. I also don't really care for the coleslaws made with an oil and vinegar dressing. I like my raw cabbage creamy. But not with mayo made from genetically modified rancid yellow seed oils. So there's a bit of a dilemma. Luckily, like all problems consisting of a yearning for creaminess and a refusal to achieve said creaminess with GMOs, this can be solved with coconut milk. I love coconut milk.
Best brand, thick and creamy
and only contains coconut milk
Like bacon, caramelized onions, and peanut butter, coconut milk makes everything better. :D And this recipe includes coconut milk, peanut butter, and onions! (well, the onions are fried, not caramelized, but close enough.) Sadly, no bacon. :( It probably wouldn't work with the other flavours. The other flavours, by the way, are Thai. Yes, I love Thai flavoured things. I wonder if it has something to do with my love of coconut milk and peanut butter? Especially since Thai food is one of the few ways of incorporating both those foods into vegetables, so it's healthier and it keeps you from eating an entire jar of peanut butter in one sitting. Anyway, this was delicious if I do say so myself. But really, how can you go wrong  with coconut milk and peanut butter? (By not adding enough, that's how!) :D So enjoy your coleslaw, because it can be much more interesting and delicious and healthy than cabbage and mayo.

One final note: while writing this, I suddenly thought, sprinkling of shredded coconut. And tamarind in the sauce. Why do I never get these ideas while I'm cooking? It was terrific without these additions, but it would be nice to add them. A fancy drizzle of tamarind puree would be really pretty.

Thai Peanut Slaw


1/2 head cabbage
2 carrots, grated
1 red bell pepper, very thinly sliced
1 onion, very thinly sliced
3 cloves of garlic, halved lengthwise and very thinly sliced
2-inch knob of ginger, half of it grated, half of it cut into very thin matchsticks
1-2 Tbsp coconut oil (enough to fry the onions, garlic and ginger)
1 cup coconut milk
3/4 cup peanut butter
juice of 1 lime
2 tsp tamari or nama shoyu
red pepper flakes, to taste
1/2 english cucumber, very thinly sliced
cilantro sprig, tamarind puree, and/or shredded coconut to garnish


1. Lay the cucumbers in a ring around the edge of your serving dish (this is optional, it adds to the presentation. You could also just cut the cucumber into very thin noodle-type threads and add them in with the other vegetables).
2. Combine the cabbage, carrots, and peppers.
3. Heat the coconut oil over high heat.
4. Add the onions, garlic, and ginger matchsticks. Fry until crispy, stirring frequently. Remove to paper towels to drain and sprinkle with salt.
5. Whisk together the coconut milk, peanut butter, lime, tamari, red pepper flakes, and the grated ginger. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary. 
6. Toss together the sauce, the vegetables, and the fried onion mixture.
7. Place in the serving bowl with the cucumbers, sprinkle with shredded coconut, drizzle with tamari puree, and garnish with cilantro, if using.

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