“It is often mild distraction that moves the imagination forward, not uninterrupted concentration. Thinking then works by indirection, sauntering in a roundabout way to places it cannot reach directly.”
From Woolf’s Darkness by Rebecca Solnit
Sometimes I wish that I had more time to myself. More time in which to read and write, to think, to daydream. It makes me wonder what I did with all the time in the day that was mine before I had a kid. Procrastinated, drank beer. One thing about not having a lot of free time is that when I do have it, I (usually) use it better – when you only have an hour till the child wakes up again procrastination is not an option. Which is why I like the quote above; it reminds me that my creative juices will continue to flow despite everything.
It has been a while since I’ve done a favourites post on here. In theory I do them every month. In practice, well, not so much (see above re: time). But considering that this is a favourite salad of mine at the moment, I thought that I’d combine this recipe post with a short ‘n’ sweet favourites post of things I’ve eaten/read/listened to/watched these past few months.
– I just finished reading Rebecca Solnit’s concise collection of wonderful feminist essays Men Explain Things To Me
– “My salad days, when I was green in judgement: cold in blood…” (William Shakespeare). This quote provides the title for Ronnie Scott’s fantastic long essay on modern foodie culture, Salad Days
– It isn’t new, but I read White Tiger while we were in Bali and loved it; a murder mystery that also provides a haunting glimpse into class struggle in India
– It isn’t exactly baking weather here in Brisbane but I want to make these so bad
– This looks like a wonderful take on a vegetarian Banh Mi
– These look all kinds of delicious
– A beautiful poetic collaboration from three wonderful Brisbane lady poets, We Bury Not Burn by Eleanor Jackson, Betsy Turcot & Chloe Callistemon
Okay, now back to the Purple Cabbage, Zucchini & Dill ‘Slaw. I’ve been all over yoghurt salad dressing these days. Perhaps it is pregnancy cravings, perhaps it is the onset of summer days here in Brisbane, but either way I’m dressing almost all of my lunchtime salads with some kind of yoghurt-lemon combo. Sometimes I’ll throw some spices in there, usually not. Especially if I’ve got herbs through the salad, I find that a simple yoghurt dressing is all it needs.
This particular ‘slaw combines the tangy yoghurt dressing with the deliciousness of toasted caraway salads (always a favourite of mine), and the crunch of purple cabbage. And the dill really gives the whole dish a flavour punch. I’d also highly recommend serving it with some creamy avocado – a lovely offset to the cabbage. The egg is more optional – if you’re having this is a complete meal it’s nice to have the protein, but if it’s a side to a main then you could probably skip the egg.
Basically, this is an easy salad to throw together, it keeps well, and it is totally delicious. Win win.
Purple Cabbage, Zucchini & Dill ‘Slaw
½ small purple cabbage
1 cup fresh dill (packed)
1/4 cup sesame seeds
2 tbsp caraway seeds
1 tbsp crushed nuts (pistachios, walnuts, almonds)
2 poached eggs (optional, to serve)
1 avocado (optional, to serve)
½ cup plain yoghurt
1 tbsp lemon juice
Salt & pepper, to taste
Finely slice the purple cabbage. Using a mandoline (or very sharp knife), slice the zucchini into thin ‘noodles’. Roughly chop the dill and in a medium-sized bowl combine the cabbage, zucchini and dill.
In a small bowl combine the yoghurt and the lemon juice and add salt & pepper, to taste.
Pour the yoghurt dressing over the salad and stir through thoroughly, being sure to coat everything well. Pop into the fridge for at least 30 mins (and up to a couple of hours) to let the cabbage soften.
In the meantime, dry toast the sesame and caraway seeds on a pan over a medium heat until they start to colour and crackle – not more than 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat immediately and set aside.
When you’re ready to serve, stir the sesame & caraway seed mixture through the salad. Divide into two bowls and, if using, top each bowl with a poached egg and half an avocado, sliced. Garnish with the crushed nuts. Enjoy!