Simple Coleslaw

I used to think I didn’t like guacamole. Turns out, I just didn’t like that green stuff that Taco Bell calls guacamole. I don’t know what that stuff is, but its not guacamole. Then my friend Suni made a bowl of fresh guacamole and forced me to try it against my will. It was delicious, and from then on I vowed to always try anything once. And I learned how much better things were when they were with real, fresh ingredients. Now before you think I’m nuts to have never tried real guacamole, I was about 15 at the time and an exhaustingly picky eater. Hmm, maybe that’s where my kids get it.

I also I used to think I didn’t like coleslaw. That’s because I don’t like what KFC calls coleslaw and I had never had it any other way. While I was pregnant last summer, I had a hankering for pulled pork. I went to the booth on Treat Street at the county fair and ordered one and they asked if I wanted the slaw on the side or on my sandwich. Gross! On the side! No, I don’t want any at all! I thought. As I waited for my sandwich, I over heard 90% of the people behind me also refuse the coleslaw. “Its how they do it in the south,” the booth worker explained each time someone gave him a weird look.

So I went and ate my slaw-less sandwich and thought about it. A curious thing about pregnancy, although it can make to most delicious things sound revolting, like coffee or In and Out, as in may case, it can also make weird things sound good, and coleslaw sounded good. So when I went to order my second sandwich (Hey! I was eating for two!) I got the coleslaw on it. The texture was amazing. The crunch to counter the tenderness of the pork, ahhh.

From that point on, I wanted a simple coleslaw recipe for when I make my pulled pork. I am still rather picky and don’t think things like sugar belongs in salads, slaws, and spaghetti sauce, to name a few. That made narrowing the list of recipes down quite easy. I also knew to run from anything titled “KFC’s Coleslaw Recipe” or anything that called for miracle whip. (What on earth is that nasty stuff? Mayonnaise with sugar? Who actually eats it? On purpose?)

Once I narrowed my search down, I found this little gem. Simple, delicious and so perfect on my pulled pork. You could add a few vegetables and maybe some chicken to take a great salad in a different direction. But for the foundation the perfect, simple coleslaw, here you go.

  • 4 cups, unpacked shredded cabbage, red, green, or both
  • 1/2 large carrot, julienned
  • 2-4 green onions thinly sliced

For the dressing:

  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. seasoned (or plain) rice vinegar
  • salt
  • fresh pepper

Combine cabbage, carrots, and onions in a large bowl. Add olive oil, toss to coat. Add vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. Serve on pulled pork or as is!

Homemade Hamburger Buns

These delicious, hearty buns are a great alternative store bought buns. Sure, they take a bit of time to make, but with a total of 8 natural ingredients, they sure beat all the additives and preservatives you’ll find in the grocery store. They are hearty, soft, and very much worth the work!

A few tips, if you happen to have a Kitchenaid mixer with a dough hook but have never tried it (like me!) here is your chance! I can not believe how much easier making bread will be in the future without having to knead. I also can’t believe I never tried the dough hook before in the 5 years I’ve had the thing.

Secondly, make sure you use a thermometer to check the liquids before you add them to your yeast and flour. For this recipe, you will need it to be between 120-130 degrees F. Any lower, your yeast may not activate, any higher, you may kill it.

  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 5 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 envelope of dry active yeast
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 Tbsp. water

1. Combine the milk, 1 cup of water, butter, sugar, and salt in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat and let stand until lukewarm. (120-130 degrees.)

2. In a large bowl, stir together flour and yeast. Pour in wet ingredients and stir until dough starts to pull together. Mix on dough hook for 8 minutes, or knead on a floured surface for 10 minutes. Place in a greased bowl and turn to coat. Cover and let stand until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

3. Punch dough down and divide into 12 portions, each a little larger than a golf ball. Make tight little balls out of the dough by pulling the dough down and pinching it at the bottom. Place dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil. After rolls sit for about a minute and relax, flatten each ball with the palm of your hand until 3-4 inches wide. Set balls aside until double in size, about 20 minutes.

4. Preheat oven to 400. Mix together egg yolk and 1 Tbsp. water in a small bowl. Brush on top of rolls. Position oven racks so they are not too close to the top or the bottom of oven.*

5. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove the rolls from one rack and put on the other. Bake an additional 5-10 minutes until browned on top and bottom.

*I’m not sure this moving the pan and rack step is really needed, but it was in this recipe, which I got from allrecipes.com and suppose its there for some reason.