When putting together a light summer plate I always like to add a slaw. Some may consider slaw boring, but it is incredibly versatile – you can add anything that can be finely sliced – and it can help boost your plant-based variety.
For example, even this simple recipe contains four fruits and vegetables but you could easily add other ingredients like finely sliced fennel, celery and/or kale to boost the variety further, and get a wide range of beneficial phytochemicals – compounds found in plants.
Red cabbage, a member of the nutrient-dense cruciferous vegetable family, contains great levels of vitamin C, potassium, folic acid, vitamin B6, biotin, calcium, magnesium and manganese. It also contains glucosinolates, including indole-3-carbinol, sulphoraphane and isothiocyanates, phytochemicals with anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Apples are good sources of vitamin C and potassium, as well as beneficial phytochemicals including ellagic acid and quercetin. They also contain pectin, a soluble fibre – one medium apple contains about 3
grams of fibre, ten per cent of the recommended daily intake.
Red cabbage and
¼ medium red cabbage
1 medium apple (I used Royal Gala, but any eating apple will work)
½ red onion
1 medium carrot
1 tsp fennel seeds
2 tbsp plain live yoghurt
1 tbsp lemon juice
Pinch of salt and pepper
Cut the cabbage into quarters through the stalk and run one quarter through a mandolin or finely slice by hand. Do the same with the red onion and pop in a large mixing bowl.
Core the apple and slice thinly, then cut the slices into matchsticks. Grate the carrot and add both to the mix.
Gently crush the fennel seeds in a pestle and mortar, or with a rolling pin, and add to the fruit and vegetables along with the lemon juice, yoghurt and a pinch of salt and pepper, mixing well.
I know fennel seeds aren’t to everyone’s taste, so feel free to substitute cumin seeds, which also work well, or any herbs and spices you enjoy!
Rebecca Vincent BSc (Hons) is a BANT-registered nutritionist working in Wincanton (07515 019430); www.rebeccavincentnutrition.co.uk
by Rebecca Vincent