Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Transformative Cilantro Mint Cabbage Slaw

A case of respiratory flu and the ensuing bone-deep exhaustion combined with the change in seasons has my appetite all over the map. I've alternated between wanting nothing but mugs of steaming hot ginger-garlic chicken broth and feeling suddenly ravenous for all the lean protein and vegetables I can get my hands on. Eggs, kale, chicken, avocado, repeat.

I am so grateful for the clarity with which my body asks for what it needs to repair and restore, and I am trying to listen very closely right now. I have the sense that the only way to fully regain my strength is to pay very, very close attention to the cues of my physical self, as odd as they may be. There have been days that my body has asked me to run despite the illness, practically pleading with me for the fresh air, the sunlight, the circulation of blood, and the detoxification of sweat. So I ran. There have been days that my body very clearly needed rest. So I rested. Similarly, requests for hot showers, hot tea, eucalyptus oil diffused in a humidifier, canceled plans, and 10-hour sleeps have been granted. It's rough to be so run down, but also feels really good to take such good care of myself. It's as if I'm digging down deep into my reserves and re-building myself stronger than I existed before.

At the beginning of this week, I had a yen for something sharply tart and tangy, something crunchy with a zing to cut through the dull ache that seems to have set up camp in my head and lungs. This cabbage slaw recipe is one I've made before, but I decided, on a whim, to add some fresh mint and it was transformed from a zippy close slaw to a refreshingly zippy coleslaw.

Who knew a humble herb held such transformative powers?


2 cups green cabbage, finely shredded
2 cups purple cabbage, finely shredded
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup scallions, diced
2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
2 tbs fresh mint, chopped
Juice of half a lime
3 tsp tamari (or coconut aminos, for strict Paleo)
2 tbsp rice vinegar (or coconut vinegar, for strict Paleo)
2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tsp fresh ginger, minced

To Make:

Combine cabbage, almonds, scallions, cilantro, mint, and lime juice in a large bowl and mix together with a fork. In a separate container, whisk the tamari, rice vinegar, toasted sesame oil, and ginger together until they are well-combined. Drizzle the dressing on top of the cabbage mixture, and stir again with the fork to make sure the dressing coats everything well. Taste, and adjust your ingredients as needed (tamari for saltiness, lime for acidity, etc.). 

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