This fresh and flavorful Asian cabbage salad is a nice variation on coleslaw.

asian cabbage slaw

If you have a food processor, it is very easy to make up a big batch of this cabbage salad with cilantro and toasted almonds. It’s perfect as a summer side dish and it keeps very well, so it makes a nice healthy snack recipe. It’s also a great dish to serve at a barbeque or bring to a potluck.

Any kind of cabbage works in this salad; I used 1 whole head of green Savoy cabbage, but you could also use standard green or red cabbage, or Napa cabbage.

growing cilantro

Cilantro is one of my favorite herbs, and because I use it so much, I like growing cilantro in my garden. If you’d like to do the same, keep in mind that cilantro doesn’t like it when it’s very warm out (it bolts/goes to seed from the heat).

One way to deal with this is to grow it in a location that stays cooler/gets some shade; I put my seeds in near my tomato plants, so by the time it is summer and it’s hot and sunny, the tomatoes shade the cilantro and it does just fine.

Recipe for Cabbage Salad With Cilantro and Toasted Almonds

Yield: Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

1 head of organic cabbage, outer leaves and core removed, and shredded in a food processor or by hand
3 carrots, peeled and shredded with the cabbage, or by hand
*1 cups organic cilantro, shredded in a food processor with the cabbage, or finely chopped
*1 cup almonds, toasted in a 325 degree oven for approximately 10 minutes, and then chopped
*2 tablespoons olive oil
*1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
*2 tablespoons brown rice vinegar
*1-2 tablespoons lime juice
*1 teaspoons honey or pure maple syrup- optional
*1 tablespoon tamari (wheat-free soy sauce)
*Himalayan or sea salt to taste

Directions:

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary.

WHB3-1This is my Weekend Herb Blogging entry. Weekend Herb Blogging is managed by Haalo from Cook Almost Anything, and Lynne from Cafe Lynnylu is this week’s host!

Here is a super easy pickles recipe featuring organic seasonal ingredients.

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The cucumbers and the dill in this pickled cukes and garlic scapes recipe came from my garden, and I picked up the garlic scapes at my local farmer’s market (next year I’ll grow my own).

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If you aren’t already acquainted with garlic scapes, they are the funky curly green tops that grow out of garlic bulbs. I add them to stir-fries and use them to make pesto, and I also enjoy them in lacto-fermented pickles.

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If you didn’t catch my recent post about making sauerkraut, you might not know what lacto-fermentation is (or that I am kind of obsessed with the process).

If you aren’t familiar with it, lacto-fermentation is the act of creating a lactic-acid rich environment that enables the natural preservation of certain foods. Lacto-fermentation also makes these foods more nutritious (it increases their vitamin content) and more digestible (it fosters the growth of natural probiotics). Lacto-fermenting is also referred to as “culturing” foods.

I first learned how to make lacto-fermented vegetables from the book Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon.

Three of my other favorite references on this subject are Full Moon Feast: Food and the Hunger for Connection, Wild Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods, and Preserving Food without Freezing or Canning: Traditional Techniques Using Salt, Oil, Sugar, Alcohol, Vinegar, Drying, Cold Storage, and Lactic Fermentation.

Vegetables are easily lacto-fermented/cultured by mixing them with a salt water solution and allowing them to sit in an air-tight container (a glass mason jar works well) at room temperature for several days before moving them to the refrigerator.

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This is how foods like traditional pickles, sauerkraut, and kimchi came to be, and while I sometimes do purchase store-bought versions of these foods, I very much enjoy keeping the lacto-fermentation tradition alive in my kitchen.

Recipe for Pickled Cukes and Garlic Scapes

I like simple dill pickles without additional spices, but you could add a few teaspoons of picking spices, if you like. You could also add 1 tablespoon of mustard seeds (the original recipe from Nourishing Traditions actually calls for this).

Ingredients:

*4-5 kirby or other type of pickling cucumbers
*5 garlic scapes
*3 tablespoons snipped fresh dill
*1 tablespoon Himalayan or sea salt
*1 cup filtered water
*very clean 1 qt. wide-mouth mason jar with screw-top lid (run through the dishwasher before using to ensure it is sterilized)

Directions:

1. Wash the cucumbers. Snip off the very ends and slice them lengthwise. Cut off the tops and bottoms of the garlic scapes and then cut them into pieces several inches long.

2. Place cucumbers and garlic scapes into a 1 qt. wide-mouth mason jar. Mix salt and water in a small bowl and pour into the jar. Add additional water so that the vegetables are completely covered and the liquid is about 1 inch below the top of the jar. Screw the top on the jar tightly and allow to sit at room temperature for three days.

3. After this time, go ahead and open the jar. The liquid should be pretty fizzy, which means the lacto-fermentation was successful. If there is any type of "off smell", discard and start again (I'm mentioning this as a caution, but also want to mention that I have been lacto-fermenting for years, and I have never had anything go wrong).

4. Go ahead and taste a pickle. The cucumbers should have a nice garlicky tang from the scapes, and they should be pleasantly "dilly". You can eat the pickled garlic scapes too, of course, but they are strong.

5. Once opened, move your jar to the refrigerator for storage. Lacto-fermentation will continue in the colder temperature, but at a much slower rate, and the garlic scapes should mellow a bit over time.

July Healthy Cookbook Giveaway

It’s time for my second Healthy Cookbook Giveaway!

This month’s giveaway features a signed copy of Living Raw Food by Sarma Melngailis!

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I am not vegan or raw, but I do strive to eat lots of raw foods and I love raw foods cookbooks (“uncookbooks”, really). Living Raw Foods is one of the most beautiful cookbooks that I’ve seen; it is filled with the amazing raw food recipes Sarma serves up in her lovely Manhattan restaurant Pure Food and Wine.

The book is 376 pages long, and gorgeous photos accompany just about every recipe. A few of those that look particularly wonderful to me are the Key Lime Pie Shake, the Chanterelle and Kalamata Olive Ravioli, and the Milk Chocolate Mousse Layer Cake…it’s almost unbelievable what Sarma can do with raw vegan foods…yum, yum, yum!

Did I mention it’s a gorgeous book? Did I mention it is signed by Sarma?

The July Healthy Cookbook Giveaway is going to run from today, July 15th, until July 31st.

To be eligible to win a copy of Living Raw Food, you need to do one of the following:

1. Blog about the Living Raw Food giveaway with a link back to this post

2. Add Healthy Green Kitchen or my website, Healthy Green Lifestyle, to your blogroll.

3. Mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter with a link back to the blog or the homepage of the website (see above).

4. Submit a healthy recipe to my website.

When you’ve done something to make you eligible to win the book, please leave a comment on any post of the blog letting me know about it – that way, I’ll have your email address for the raffle.

You may leave as many comments as you like, but I can only allow one entry per person.

This contest will close at midnight EST on July 31st, so don’t wait too long to enter!

Make sure to subscribe to the blog because I’ll be featuring 2 recipes from the book next week…

I’ll put all of the email addresses into the raffle and pick a winner at random on August 1st.

Thanks for your participation in the cookbook giveaway…good luck!