When autumn rolls around, I eat a lot of apples. I will slice up an apple into quarters and start snacking. Granny Smith and Pink Ladies are the 2 varieties I’m loving right now. They’re tart and crisp and full of flavour. I bake with them and toss them into vegetable dishes. Apples are everywhere. And no surprise, they even made it into this winter slaw.
But that’s not the only surprise here. Besides the usual cabbage, I’ve added rutabaga (a large round mild turnip). I grew up with rutabaga. We ate them boiled or mashed with our Sunday lunches. And as a kid, I especially loved raw rutabaga – my mom would hand me slices to snack on before dinner. So that was my inspiration with adding them to the slaw. Raw rutabaga is crisp, earthy and sweet and as figured, it was a tasty addition to this winter slaw.
The only real tricky thing with this slaw is the knife work. Sure, you could try a mandoline for this, but I decided to just start chopping. I put on The Spilled Milk podcast on parsnips (because I’m really behind on my podcasts) and started slicing the rutabaga into thin sheets. I then stacked the thin slices and cut them into thin matchsticks. Julienned rutabaga achieved! But because my matchsticks were long, I cut them into thirds. I did the same process with the granny smith apple. And then I finely sliced and chopped the cabbage and the red pepper. Think of it as a meditative process rather than finicky piece work. And it helps to have a glass of wine to keep you calm.
Chop, chop slice, toss and then whisk up your dressing. Toss again and dig in. Don’t forget to add lots of fresh dill. I used 7 stalks of fresh dill and it didn’t overwhelm. Also, toasted walnuts add a nice nutty crunch. A lovely and fresh side dish to accompany your seasonal dinner. Leftovers held up well – I just made sure to keep extra walnuts on hand & out of the salad for over night crunch keeping!
winter rutabaga slaw
1/2 a head of rutabaga
1/2 head of cabbage
1 large granny smith apple, finely sliced & julienned
1 red pepper, sliced thin & roughly chopped
1 jalepeno, minced
1/4 of a small red onion, minced
lots of fresh dill, tough stems discarded & leaves minced
juice of 1 lemon
1-2 T cider vinegar
1 T dijon mustard
1/4 c olive oil
1-2 T maple syrup
salt & pepper
1/2 c walnuts, toasted & roughly chopped
Thinly slice rutabaga, stack the layers and then make thin slices across so you get nicely julienned strips. Cut strips into thirds if they’re too long. Add to a large serving bowl. Thinly slice the cabbage and then give it a good rough chop before adding it to the bowl. Add in the sliced red peppers and apples along with the minced jalepeno and onion. Toss the mixture well with lots of fresh dill.
In a small jar, combine the lemon juice, vinegar, mustard, olive oil, and maple syrup. Add in a pinch of kosher salt and a good grind of black pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings. Pour over slaw and toss well. Sprinkle slaw with toasted walnuts and serve.