Image for article titled Give Your Coleslaw the Wedge Salad Treatment

Photo: Claire Lower

Ever since I read that Ina Garten puts blue cheese in her coleslaw, I have been obsessed with a concept I’ve decided to call “wedgeslaw,” a coleslaw made with all the usual wedge salad accoutrement. Today I finally made it a reality, and it is all I dreamed it would be (and a little more).

Does this fly in the face of A.A. Newton’s Coleslaw Manifesto? A bit, yes. Newton is not exactly pro-riffing, but she is very pro-wedge, and I already alerted her to my flagrant disregard for the rules via text. (She is not mad.)

Making wedgeslaw proved to be very simple. Newton had already perfected the ratios for the dressing, so all I had to do was sub in a little red wine vinegar for apple cider and add a bunch of wedge salad toppings. I went with diced grape tomatoes (I like their ratio of flesh to gel), crispy bacon, thinly sliced red onion, and blue cheese, with some fresh chives as a garnish. It rules.

It tastes exactly how I thought it would: like a tangier wedge salad with a sturdier, slightly bitter leaf base, and it would be completely at home at a late-season BBQ. I wouldn’t serve it with a smoked pork shoulder (go with a classic slaw there), but it would be fantastic with a grilled simple steak or some broiled shrimp. It’s also pretty good straight out of the bowl, by itself, with an ice cold martini to wash it down.

How to make wedgeslaw (serves 6-8)

Ingredients:

For the dressing:

  • Generous ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • Generous ¼ cup sour cream
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon table salt, heaped, plus more to taste
  • 2 teaspoon granulated sugar, plus more to taste
  • 1 big pinch MSG (optional, but very good)
  • Freshly cracked black pepper (optional)

For the salad:

  • Half a head of green cabbage
  • Half a small red onion
  • 1 cup whole grape tomatoes
  • 2/3 cup blue cheese
  • 6 slices bacon, fried crisp and crumbled
  • Chives for garnishing

Mix all of the dressing ingredients together in a pourable container. Taste and add more sugar and salt (or pepper and MSG) if needed. The dressing should be borderline unpleasant on its own, so don’t be afraid of over-seasoning.

Shred the cabbage by making two opposing diagonal cuts at the top of the head and following those cuts with your knife, alternating between the two sides, until you reach the core. Add the cabbage to a big mixing bowl. Slice the onion half into thin slices, then chop those slices in half and add them to the mixing bowl. Prepare the tomatoes by cutting them into quarters vertically, then chop each of the quarters finely (each quarter into four small pieces) and add to the mixing bowl.

Toss the vegetables together, then drizzle in just enough dressing to coat. You will not use all of the dressing, so just add a little bit at a time, tossing in between additions until the vegetables are just coated. Add the bacon and blue cheese, toss once more, garnish with chives and serve immediately. (Coleslaw is almost always best when served and consumed fresh, and this is especially true when tomatoes and cheese are involved.)

 



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