Strawberry Basil Coleslaw
Coleslaw is virtually synonymous with summer barbecues and picnics. There’s something about the crunchy texture and the creamy dressing that you just have to have when you are outside in the hot summer sun spending time with the family. Sometimes the coleslaw is good, sometimes it isn’t so good – but it always seems to be there.
Coleslaw is generally too sweet for me. Even before my surgery I wasn’t the biggest fan of the sweets. But, like everyone, I need it as a side dish when I’m having one of those family gatherings. And we have those family gatherings a lot. One day I needed to make a side dish, but didn’t want to overload on sweetness. The idea came to add basil to my coleslaw.
Basil has a natural peppery flavor that is great at cutting through the cloyingly sweet dressing that often smothers our coleslaws. Basil is my favorite herb and if I could put it in everything, I probably would. I added strawberries because they are beautiful with a touch of tang and then mandarin oranges because they are so perfect in salads.
Then I developed a perfectly acidic, perfectly sweet dressing that I lightly drizzle over the salad, just enough to taste. The key is my Honey Wine Vinegar, something I discovered at the downtown Salt Lake City Farmer’s Market. I swear I could put this over ice cream it is so good. When you combine that with a lemon olive oil, the refreshing pair lifts the dressing to new places. The longer it is in your mouth, the deeper the complexities you notice. Paired with my Smoked Pulled Pork or my Buttermilk Fried Chicken Sous Vide Style, and you’ve got yourself a real summer treat that you can share proudly with your friends and family.