Cracking the Cabbage Code

I have always been a cabbage hater. Also not that fond of cauliflower or broccoli. Especially broccoli. I didn’t like Brussel sprouts until about a year or two ago and then had my world turned upside down when I tried a recipe of them roasted with a little maple syrup and orange juice. Still, cabbage. Blech. I never choose cole slaw as a side and stay away from anything remotely cabbage like.

Recently, though that has all changed. First, I tried this Warm Brussel Sprout and Pear salad from Budget Bytes. Oh, my! So delicious. Soon after that H. made a kale and cabbage slaw for Christmas. Equally delicious. (Kale was another vegetable that I felt was completely overrated.) H. remarked after the kale slaw was a hit that he felt like we had “cracked the code” on how to make really yummy slaw like salads. And since then we’ve made a bunch of slight variations on the same dish and they have all been hits.

Basically the recipe is:
Some kind of hearty shredded veggie (kale, cabbage, Brussel sprouts)
Some other veggies (red peppers, carrots, snap peas, broccoli)
Something sweet (pears, currents, figs, dates, raisins, dried cranberries)
Something crunchy/salty (cashews, peanuts, walnuts)
Some kind of dressing (make your own or bottled)

You could get fancy and add feta or olives or bacon or shredded chicken or whatever. All of these variations are incredibly easy and quick to make and mostly cheap. My kids also love them and eat them which is a revelation.

And now that I’ve had a ton of leftover cabbage from all our salads I’ve been trying other recipes and enjoying them also. I made this Beef and Cabbage Stirfry and Okonomiyaki (Savory Cabbage Pancakes) in the last week. Both were gobbled up by the kids and me (I made the stir-fry without beef and then added it in after the vegetarian in the family took his share.)

Alert readers will notice that all the recipes linked are from Budget Bytes. I’m not sure my family would ever have anything to eat other than cereal and scrambled eggs if it wasn’t for that website. I like that the recipes make an attempt to be frugal but more importantly I like that they are always tasty. And perhaps even more than that I appreciate that they are realistic. The ingredients are ones I have (or can easily substitute). The directions don’t involve a cooking degree or hours in the kitchen. If she says a recipe will take 40 min, it takes 40 min. If you aren’t using Beth to help you plan your meals, you should be!

3 thoughts on “Cracking the Cabbage Code

  1. The kale salad was delicious on New Year’s Day…as I mentioned at the time, I think it was the first kale dish I’ve ever really liked! Just wanted to say thank you for mentioning Budget Bytes; I hadn’t found that site before and have now found a number of things I’d like to try. Do you have other particular favorite recipes from there?

    • Honesty, everything we’ve tried has been good. Two favorites that I’ve made many times are the Greek Marinated Chicken and the Pan-Fried Sesame Tofu. Even avowed tofu haters love it!

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