What gets me down most about Minnesota winters, surprisingly, isn't the cold or snow. The worst part for me is the lack of sunlight, as the daylight hours become depressingly short from November through January. My commute into work is in the dark, I spend my day in an interior office, and then I commute back home in the dark. It makes me feel like some sort of subterranean creature. A cold subterranean creature.
But the days are getting noticeably longer, with the sunrise and sunset now occurring during my commute, which is progress. But we are still five months away from the beginning of CSA season, and I was feeling somewhat morose as I pondered what type of salad to bring to a potluck dinner this past Saturday. I discarded the idea of a simple tossed salad as too boring, but my other ideas (Marinated Tomato Salad with Arugula and Feta and Tomato Arugula Salad with Quinoa) revolved around ripe tomatoes, which are obviously in short supply when the snow is a couple of feet deep. Since I've had cabbage on the brain lately, I went in search of salads that used red cabbage as a base and settled on this recipe from Green Kitchen Stories. With its vibrant hues of purple, green, and orange combined with crunchy and crispy textures, it's a fresh-tasting reminder that winter will be over eventually.
Since I was making this for a crowd, my version is a double batch of the original recipe, and it gives you a lot of salad (so much, in fact, that I had to toss it in my stockpot since none of my bowls were big enough). It does keep fairly well for a couple days, but definitely halve this recipe if making for a smaller group.
Adapted from Crispy Red Cabbage Salad by Green Kitchen Stories
Yield: about 16 one-cup servings
- 1 medium head of red cabbage, outer leaves removed, cored, quartered, and thinly sliced
- 1 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 4 oranges, peeled and cut into bit-sized pieces
- 2 1/2 cups seedless grapes, halved
- 1 cup chopped parsley
- 1 1/2 cups walnuts, coarsely chopped
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons honey
- juice of one orange
- salt and pepper, to taste
Combine cabbage, onion, oranges, grapes, parsley, and walnuts in a very large bowl. Toss well.
In a small bowl, combine olive oil, honey, and orange juice. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour olive oil dressing over salad and toss to evenly coat.