Recipe Book: Coleslaw

Ahhh, coleslaw….

Is there anything so easily made and so delicious, and yet so few people make it themselves?  I think the main problem with making your own coleslaw is that a whole cabbage, shredded up, makes an awful lot of shredded cabbage! Much easier to come into The Howff and buy a tub of the stuff.

However, if you’re having the family around or having a party or a BBQ, here’s how to make it yourself. Warning: makes an awful lot of coleslaw!

1 whole head of cabbage.  (I use whatever is in season. Pointed cabbage is the best for flavour and colour. It’s available in late spring and all summer.  White cabbage is good to use, as long as you cut it really finely. Savoy cabbage tastes great but looks a bit strange and off putting. Red cabbage is delicious, but you get very, very pink coleslaw.)

4 medium carrots, or 2 large carrots

1 small red onion

good quality mayonnaise, approx 300ml, depending on the consistency you prefer


– remove all outer leaves, wash, and cut cabbage in half

– remove centre root. It’s right up the middle of the cabbage. Make a V shape with a small, sharp veg knife and discard.

– with the cabbage lying cut side down on your chopping board, start cutting very thin slices off the cabbage. Try to get them as wafer thin as you can. Place into mixing bowl.

– remove outer skin of the red onion. Cut in half and lie cut side down on the chopping board. Cut into slices horizontally, and then vertically. Add to cabbage in the mixing bowl.

– peel the carrots and cut the tops and tails off. Using a grater, grate the carrot. It’s up to you if you prefer the coarser or thicker side of the grater. Add carrot to the cabbage and onion in the mixing bowl.

– mix in the mayo. Some people like lots of mayo in their coleslaw, others like it just to bind the ingredients together. Bear in mind that if you make the coleslaw the night before you need it, it will generate its own moisture as the cabbage and carrot leach out their natural juices. My advice is not to add to much mayo until you are serving the coleslaw. It’s easier to add mayo than take it away.

– once made, your coleslaw is good for two days, as long as it’s kept in the fridge.

pics to follow


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