Thursday, August 27, 2015

Green Apple & Fennel Slaw

We are big Food Network fans, which I am sure surprises no one.  One of our favorite shows is Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives.  We recently viewed an episode which presented pulled-pork sandwiches topped with a green apple and fennel slaw.  The awesome restaurant was in Vancouver, BC, a bit too far for a visit and taste.   However, for a recent large family gathering, we attempted to recreate the dish tweaking it to feature our amazing gourmet condiments.

The slaw we created turned out to be a stand-alone star.  Our take focused on a creamier (but not too) version of what we saw on TV - theirs had a more 'pickling spice' approach.  Plus, we knew our White Balsamic Vinegar with Pear would tie the elements together - particularly the apple & fennel.  We think the result is amazing, with varying shades of white to green color that is gorgeous when presented.

By the way, you can still use this on a pulled-pork sandwich!  We won't tell!

  • 1 (8 or 10) ounce package shredded green cabbage
  • ice water as needed
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • 1 medium fennel bulb
  • 2 small Granny Smith apples
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons PastamorĂ© White Balsamic with Pear
  • 1 tablespoon milk, plus more as needed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
  • 2 green onions, including tender green parts thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup minced fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley 
Fill a large bowl with ice water and squeeze the juice of 1/2 lemon into it. Bring a large saucepan three-fourths full of water to a boil over high heat and add the juice of remaining lemon half.

Cut off stems and feathery fronds of the fennel bulb and remove any bruised or discolored outer leaves. Cut the bulb in half lengthwise and cut out any tough core parts. Thinly slice each half into matchsticks sized pieces and place immediately in the bowl of iced lemon water. When all the fennel is cut, transfer with a slotted spoon to the boiling water and blanch for 1 minute. (Reserve the bowl of iced lemon water for the apples.) Drain the blanched fennel and rinse under cold running water. Transfer to a fresh bowl of ice water. Set aside.

Working with 1 apple at a time, quarter it and cut away the core. Slice each quarter into matchstick sized pieces and place immediately in the reserved lemon water. Repeat with the remaining apple.

In another bowl, combine the mayonnaise, sugar, lemon juice, pear balsamic vinegar, milk. Mix together and add the black pepper and adjust the seasonings, taste. The dressing should be both sweet and tangy, and the consistency should be pour-able, not thick. Add a little more milk if the dressing is too thick.

Place cabbage in a large bowl. Drain the fennel and apples, squeeze gently to remove excess water, pat dry and add to the bowl of cabbage. Add the green onions and parsley. Pour the dressing over all and mix well. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Serves six.

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