Red Miso Slaw


I am obsessed with slaw. Coleslaw, cabbage salad, crunchy salad- whatever you want to call it, any type of slaw in a slight dairy based dressing is my downfall. Spoonfuls stolen from the freshly mixed bowl, bright, vibrant and young; ladled onto the side of pretty much any other dished-up meal, or eaten days later after a slight fermentation in the fridge, however I end up eating it, I’m head over heels for the stuff. Of course, there are many ways to concoct this delight. I have, over the last 30 years, grated and chopped and sliced an mixed, all in search of the nirvana of slaws. This one is pretty close. I mean, it’s not going to stop me changing things about and experimenting even further, but this is one I am currently falling back on each week, especially with this glorious weather we are having.


Serves 6 as a large side


Half a pointed spring cabbage finely sliced or shredded- the large, darker outer leave removed and kept for something else. You want the paler green ones here.

Half a red cabbage (hard heart removed and discarded please) finely sliced or shredded

A quarter white cabbage finally sliced or shredded (again- no room for hard hearts here. Discard)

2 large carrots, peeled and grated

1 large at Jalapeño Chilli, deseeded and finely sliced

1 tsp Maldon salt

Good grinding black pepper

Pinch white pepper

1 large banana shallot, sliced within an inch of its life

1 heaped tbsp red miso paste

Juice of half a lemon

125ml (half a cup) good mayo

125ml sour cream

2 tbsp double cream

About 2 heaped tbsp chopped fresh dill, parsley and basil

2 tbsp or so freshly microplaned parmesan


Mix well- the miso paste will need a particular vigorous hand to ensure it is evenly distributed. You must, must must taste for seasoning and texture. You may need to up the mayo, or adjust the lemon, or pepper, or indeed the miso paste.

Orange, Cabbage & Pak Choi Slaw

The Plain Kitchen Pak Choi Slaw

Like so many fresh, crunchy, salads and slaws, this relies a great deal on its dressing, which in turn relies a great deal on oranges and Jalapeño chillies. I serve it, usually, with slow roasted pork belly, if we are going for something light. The fresh crunch and sharp flavours work very well with something like a slow roast, particularly if you fancy moving away from the traditional roast potato and gravy route. I love the way too, once you have mixed the salad together with the dressing, the red cabbage stains the liquid so beautifully: I pour any excess dressing away from the slaw, as pictured, and I serve alongside the bowl. It just looks lovely, and allows folk to help themselves to extra, should they want to do so.

The recipe for the most amazing slow roast pork belly is coming up very soon: it will be one of the Sunday Sue Davies BBC Wiltshire recipes: look out for it!

Serves 4, as a side


For the slaw:

1/3 red cabbage, finely sliced

1/3 red pepper, finely sliced

1/2 cucumber, finely sliced or grated

1 large head pak choi, topped and tailed, and finely sliced

1/4 cup each of:

parsley, coriander. mint and basil, chiffonade, or chopped

For the dressing:

1 tbsp Mirin rice wine

1 tsp maple syrup

zest and juice of 1 orange

2 tbsp red wine vinegar

1 tsp Maldon salt

Splash soya sauce

1 jalapeno pepper, topped & tailed and finely sliced

Juice of 1/3 of a lime


Mix all of the dressing ingredients in a jam jar, and shake well. Mix the slaw and dressing in a large bowl, and use your hands to really ensure everything is well coated. Pop the slaw into a bowl, and pour any remaining dressing into a bowl, and serve alongside the slaw.