Don's Far-East Far-Out Coleslaw
This is a recipe I came up with a few years ago when green lettuce prices were sky-high and cabbage was cheap. I never make it exactly the same way, so feel free to adjust the ingredients to your own palates.
- one-half head of green cabbage, shredded
- half a bunch of green onions, chopped
- half a bunch of cilantro, chopped
- 2 medium carrots, grated
- 1/4 cup sliced, pickled ginger, julienned
- 1/4 cup salted black beans (available at any Asian grocery store)
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp. toasted sesame oil
- 1/2 cup rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup sugar or Mirin (sweet cooking wine)
- 1 tbsp. ground chili paste or hot sauce
- Juice of one lemon
- Toasted sesame seeds
In a large bowl, toss together all the salad ingredients. In a small sieve, rinse the black beans in cold water, then finely chop. Put the beans in a small bowl and mix in the rest of the dressing ingredients. Pour over the salad and mix well. Refrigerate for about an hour before serving. Just before serving, stir in the lemon juice and sprinkle in the sesame seeds. This keeps in the fridge for several days, and you can even add fresh cabbage to it if you have sufficient dressing left in the bottom of the bowl.
Oven-Roasted Roma Tomatoes
I once went over to James Barber's place to interview him on some topic I can't recall. When I arrived, the Urban Peasant was in the midst of getting these Roma tomatoes ready to go into the oven. He told me how to do it, and I've been doing them ever since, especially in the winter, when fresh tomato prices are either sky-high or of very poor quality, or both!
- Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees F.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Take half a dozen, or however many you think will fit, fresh roma tomatoes. Slice them in half lengthwise.
- Using a teaspoon, scrape out all the cores and seeds.
- Place them cut side up on the baking sheet.
- Drizzle with olive oil, and dried herbs of your choice, basil or oregano for example, maybe some freshly ground black pepper. Don't add salt yet, as you want the heat to draw the moisture slowly out of the tomatoes, and adding salt will draw it out too quickly.
- Place in oven and roast for at least 2-3 hours, until the tomatoes collapse and flatten.
- Remove from oven and let cool. Place them in a Tupperware container and store in the fridge for no more than a week. Use them in salads, as snacks, as parts of canapés, let your imagination run wild.
- You can also cover them in olive oil and refrigerate. The tomatoes will then perfume the olive oil, which you can then use in salad dressings or marinades.