It’s not so much that it’s bad produce – it’s just not the same kind of growing green and alive produce that showed up every couple of weeks during the summer. The Green Earth stuff was so fresh that it would off-gas in my crisper drawer – I’d find condensation droplets collected on the glass roof of the bin.
I thought maybe the problem was my own lack of imagination – maybe I was caught in a broccoli rut. The trip to Guatemala only compounded the problem, because of course the only produce served down there was seasonal and grown locally -- my first encounter with a Chicago winterized tomato nearly spun me into a depression. So this last week I went digging for something uniquely winter-like -- and came up with something that just might get me through to Spring.
Not too complicated, maybe so simple that you’ve seen it before -- this one did the trick for me last night. It’s like all the recipes from A Painter’s Kitchen -- a compilation of the recipes that Georgia O’Keefe served up at Ghost Ranch -- very few ingredients are required -- what matters most is careful attention to the details of its preparation.
Cabbage Salad with Apple and
½ small green or red cabbage (I used green)
1 small apple with a sweet and tart flavor
walnutspecans (I don’t like walnuts so much) Herb salad dressingThe recipe for the mustard-based dressing shows up earlier in the book, but you could use your favorite and it would work well here. I followed the advice of the intro accompanying the recipe and threw in a little Greek yogurt instead.
Halve and core the cabbage half. Slice into fine shreds – no wider than 1/8 inch and no longer than 2 inches. Slice the apple into chunks about ¼ inch thick and a ½ inch square. (If the apple isn’t organic you may want to skin that bitter peel off first.) Break the pecans up so they’re about the same size as the apple pieces.
Toss the cabbage, apple and pecan pieces together. In a side dish, mix together the yogurt – best if it’s Greek and whole fat (I used FAGE Total Classic) with a splash of lemon juice.
Once that’s where you like it, mix it in with that perky eat-me-now-I’m-so-crisp-and-lovely sliced goodness that you mixed up in the other bowl.
Serves 4 to 6.
Freely adapted from A Painter’s Kitchen: Recipes from the kitchen of Georgia O’Keefe