Monday, August 2, 2010

Legume Visions and Cruciferous Wishes: Cabbage

Long ago during my childhood and adolescence in Southern California's San Fernando Valley, our family would go to The Northwoods Inn in San Gabriel to celebrate some of our special occasions.  Kitsch was, in all probability, actually INVENTED at The Northwoods Inn; from the faux snow on the roof to the peanut shells and sawdust on the floor, "rusticity" abounds.
In spite - or perhaps because of - the tacky appearance of the place, the food at Northwoods is actually quite tasty. In fact there are two dishes from there that I remember with great gustatory fondness, and one of them has to do with cabbage. I've had plans for our first cabbage since their very first planting, and those plans were to recreate The Northwoods Inn Red Cabbage Salad.

Our First-born Cabbage, halved.

In order to do this I had to resort to finding a "Clone" recipe online; rather understandably, The Northwoods Inn does not make their recipes public.  However, thanks to an enterprising Internets Recipe Cloner, I came across this very, very excellent replica at
"This is a clone recipe of the very popular sweet and sour cabbage slaw served at the popular North Woods Inn California restaurant chain. Plan ahead. This salad needs a long marination time. It's good after 48 hours, but even better after 4 or 5 days. This is the perfect make-ahead salad."
Red Cabbage Salad


* 1/2 head red cabbage
* 1/2 cup vegetable oil
* 1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
* 3 Tbsp sugar
* 2 tsp salt [I omitted this ingredient]
* 1 tsp Lawry's Seasoned Salt
* 1/4 tsp black pepper
* 3/4 tsp onion powder

  1. Shred half of the cabbage finely and the other half coarsely. Place in a large bowl.
  2. Whisk together vegetable oil, red wine vinegar, sugar, salt, seasoned salt, black pepper, and onion powder.
  3. Toss the dressing with the cabbage. Scrape the salad with the dressing into a zip-top bag or covered container and refrigerate at least 48 hours or until cabbage turns deep red, softens a bit, and flavors meld. It's even better after 4 or 5 days.
I let our salad sit in the 'fridge in a zip bag for just about 36 hours before serving and it was D.E.L.I.C.I.O.U.S.

Not much left after the meal!