Wednesday, August 19, 2009

A Verdant Salad

I'm facing yet another episode of the Magical Never-ending Cabbage. Every time I buy a large head of cabbage, it seems to last forever and ever. I shred it, saute it, steam it for one dish after another, and yet I can never seem to use up the cabbage. Does it sound like I am complaining? Never. Cabbages are the stars of my vegetable crisper. Budget-friendly (the current 5-lb monster cost me 2 bucks and was grown on a local farm), sturdy enough to live in the fridge for a couple of weeks, and versatile, there is much to love here.

This impromptu salad was our dinner last night. I came home to a power cut, after being thoroughly soaked in the thunderstorm that precipitated the power outage. In the half-darkness of the kitchen and the black hole of the fridge, I groped for a few ingredients, chopped them together and put together a salad.

I had been playing with the idea of an avocado-based dressing for some time, with herbs and avocado and yogurt all blended into a thick, creamy dressing. With the food processor out of commission, the herbs went into the salad and the dressing was simply whisked by hand. If you are no salad lover, this is the kind of tasty dressing that will change your mind about eating a salad-only lunch. I speak from experience :)


Salad- In a large bowl, toss together
1 cup cooked black beans
¼ medium head of cabbage, thinly shredded
1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
Handful of cilantro, minced

Season the salad with salt, pepper and some lemon juice.

Dressing- Mix together
Pulp of 1 ripe avocado
½ cup yogurt
1 fresh hot green chilli pepper, minced
1 tbsp. minced onion
Salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Pile the salad on a plate and ladle on the dressing!

In shades of pastel barely-there green, this dressing looked innocent enough, but the heat of the green chilli asserted itself in every bite.

With three kinds of peppers (bell pepper, chilli pepper and peppercorns), this salad is heading to the soup/salad event No Croutons Required- the theme this month is Peppers.


  1. I can so imagine this on a sandwich with lotsa vegs! Daliya yes, u can have the whole packet, I feel it glares at me everytime I walk past it.

  2. Not a fan of raw cabbage. But I'm inspired to try this- looks yummy. The avocado dressing is a great idea for my non-salad loving hubby! Thanks Nupur.

  3. I have all the ingredients at home to make this. I wanted to make guacamole with the avocado but realized I don't have any jalapenos. Thank you for this simple yet nutritious recipe!


  4. Looks perfect! It has everything covered - protein, greens, good fat and taste. Have all the ingredients...will give it a try soon. Thanks.

  5. I like the idea of the avocado salad dressing.

    Hey, you always come up with the cool projects/posts like your current Bookmark Project!

  6. I love cabbage too and always have it!
    Salads are not really my thing unless they have a gr8 dressing and I can see that this one is! on my list!

  7. This is an awesome recipe. Quick and healthy! The best part is that the dressing is healthy and sounds yummy too. Thanks Nupur!

  8. wow thats a perfect salad for a dinner!!

  9. I have been a long time reader of your blog... Just now discovered you on ravelry. Wow you have finished quite a few projects in the year you have been knitting!


  10. Avacado dressing sounds delicious. The photos look great and dish looks mouth watering.

  11. I do salads for lunch every day. Love your dressing, I love avocado in any form.

  12. I love a nice green cabbage for all the reasons you stated, Nupur -- and your avocado dressing is *divine*!!!

  13. lovely white and green colour salad

  14. like the avocado dressing. cabbage is a favorite of mine too but i do not buy it as often as i probably should! i have a nice indian cabbage and fennel sabzi on my blog which you might like to use the rest of that cabbage for! ;-)

  15. I so agree about never ending cabbage...!

    Fortunately, it lends itself to different cuisines :) and it does that well :)

    I hope your power cuts don't last long :) Lovely salad

  16. what an interesting way to use cabbages..i am often stuck with lots of cabbages in my kitchen...atleast now i have one more thing to do witj 'em..

  17. That just looks crisp and clean and cool and perfect for these too hot days.


  18. I made this salad yesterday for dinner. it was lovely! probably the first time i really liked a homemade salad. I added some cucumber and used kidney beans instead of black beans. Also added a garlic clove and little bit of sugar to the dressing. Thanks for posting such wonderful recipes on the blog!

  19. Salad looks lovely, like your choice of dressing! like the choice of veggies used in the salad :)

  20. hmmm.... i am not so high on salads, but this one looks yummyyy...think ill give it a shot..

  21. Salad looks healthy and I love the dresssing.

  22. SJ- Yes, it would make a fantastic sandwich/pita stuffing.

    Priya- You just might start loving raw cabbage if it is dressed the right way :)

    Mamatha- I hope you enjoy it!

    Mekhala Nag- Very true, it covers a lot of the good food groups!

    Cynthia- I'm really enjoying the bookmark project- I had no idea who many fantastic recipes were hidden in there just waiting to be made :)

    Manasi- Me too, I need a good dressing to entice me to eat a salad.

    Pal- Glad you like it!

    chakhlere- Thanks :)

    subha- Thank you, I feel in love with knitting and it has become a big part of my life :)

    Supriya- Thank you :)

    Soma- Me too, avocados are wonderful!

    Linda- The dressing really was tasty, I'll be making this again and again.

    Rekha shoban- thanks

    MeetaK- sounds good.

    Raaga- I completely agree, I find myself using it in everything from subzis and raitas to stir fries and burritos. The power came back in 2 hours, no big deal.

    s- If you try it, I hope you enjoy it.

    Almost Vegetarian- Crisp and cool is exactly what it was!

    musical- :)

    Nikita- Thanks for the feedback, I am so glad you enjoyed this recipe.

    Parita, Priya, Divya Vikram- Thank you :)

  23. Nupur you are MacGyver in the kitchen! I think I would have thrown up my hands and headed to Chipotle :) I confess that the avocado is one of those vegetables that I haven't given a fair chance. I know everyone will think I'm crazy, but I've never fallen in love with Guacamole and so haven't been inclined to try it in anything else. I think this dressing gets past the texture issues that are probably at the root of my indifference to avocado and I too usually have a never-ending cabbage in the fridge - so I'll be trying it soon! P.S. - I was planning to try Madhur Jaffrey's wonderful Sri Lankan Greens with cabbage this evening - have you ever tried that for using up cabbage? Won't work when the power is out though :)

  24. Hi Nupur,
    I've come over via your entry at Tinned Tomatoes. I like the simplicity of this dish. Thank you for sharing.

  25. Ganapati bappa moraya!! :-)

    You planning on making ukadiche modak Nupur??

  26. Salad dressing made of avocado and yoghurt? Yummy! Gonna leave out the green pepper when I make this though, because I'm not keen on it. May grate some raw zucchini it though...


The spammers are out in full force so I've had to turn word verification on! Thanks for leaving a comment- I read and respond to every single one.