I often go back and remake some of my old recipes, and when the original photo is really bad (as are most of my early ones), I take a new photo. Sometimes, however, I go a little bit further and change up the recipe so that it fits my current tastes. That’s what happened to this coleslaw.
The longer I’m vegan–and it’s been 19 years now–the more I try to improve the nutritional quality of the food I eat. I started out by reducing my use of refined fat, then I increased the amount of vegetables I eat, then I all but eliminated flour and sugar. And now, finally, I’m working on decreasing salt. (Don’t ask me about my coffee consumption. Some things just aren’t negotiable.)
For my lunch today, I wanted to have this Sesame Orange Coleslaw that I created during my second month of blogging. But as I was preparing to make it, I noticed that the recipe contained more salt, sugar, and sesame oil than I would use today. So I remade the recipe according to my current tastes, reducing the sesame oil, changing the seasoned rice vinegar (which contains added sugar and salt) to regular rice vinegar, using stevia instead of sugar, and omitting the mirin (which contains both sugar and salt). And though I left the soy sauce in the ingredients marked as optional, I left that out of my coleslaw, too.
And I loved it! I did spice up my bowl with some red pepper, and I turned it into a meal-in-a-bowl by adding chickpeas. The orange juice and sesame oil give the salad a subdued sweet and nutty flavor, but the orange slices are like bursts of edible sunshine.
- 1 bag (16 ounces) prepared coleslaw or 15 ounces cabbage plus one carrot, grated
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper
- 3 small seedless oranges, broken into sections (or 2 navel oranges, peeled and sliced)
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon low-sodium tamari or soy sauce (optional)
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
- 1 tablespoon grated peeled fresh ginger root
- 1 teaspoon lime or lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon dark sesame oil (or to taste)
- sweetener to taste (see Notes)
- Combine the coleslaw, bell pepper, and orange slices in a large salad bowl. Mix together the remaining ingredients and pour over the vegetables. Allow the flavors to combine for at least half an hour in the refrigerator before serving.
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