With all the hearty comfort food we eat in the winter, sometimes it’s nice to balance it out with a salad that is light in flavor and texture.
This refreshing winter slaw is just that salad. Crunchy finely shaved cabbage, fennel & shallots are covered in a creamy light and lemony dressing, sprinkled with beautiful pomegranate arils and sweet honey walnuts and topped with comforting roasted Seckel pears. The perfect balance!
I like to use those cute little Seckel pears for this salad. They are a perfect size when you cut them in half. But if you can’t find them, use your favorite pears cut in quarters instead. Simply roasted with olive oil, thyme and cracked pink peppercorns.
This dressing is sooooo luscious. Not your typical coleslaw dressing. This is made bright and fresh with the addition of lemon juice and lemon zest. For a creamy dressing, it’s so light and refreshing! I love making it as a dressing for fish and veggies, too!
You know what I love about this salad? While we think of most slaws as a casual salad, this pretty winter slaw can really dress up a holiday table!
I love all the flavors and textures of this salad. Cool crunchy cabbage and fennel, tangy shallots, creamy lemony dressing, sweet honey walnuts, tart pomegranate seeds and warm sweet pepper & thyme pears.
Slaws are a pretty flexible salad. So here’s how you can MAKE IT YOUR OWN:
- I used green cabbage. But you can use white or purple or a combination of several cabbages. Short on time? You can certainly use your favorite prepackaged slaw mix.
- You don’t have to make this a slaw at all. Simply toss all the ingredients with your favorite greens, top with pears.
- Can’t find Seckel pears? Use regular pears, cut into quarters. Apples would work, too!
- Add a chewy element by swapping the pomegranate seeds for dried cranberries.
- Any nut will work in this salad. How about pecans, cashews or pumpkin seeds?
- I used fennel and shallots to break up the monotony of the cabbage. Try spring onions, purple onions, celery or carrots.
- I LOVE this lemony dressing and I think you will, too. But a regular slaw dressing would do the trick. Or try adding herbs like dill or rosemary.
- I sprinkled the pears with cracked pink peppercorns and thyme. But here again, other herbs and spices would be fine. Use your favorites!
- FOR THE SALAD:
- 6 cups of finely sliced cabbage (Fresh Express offers bagged Angel Hair Cabbage)
- 1 cup of finely sliced fennel
- ¼ cup of finely sliced shallots
- 4 Seckel pears, halved and cored
- ¼ cup of pomegranate seeds
- ¼ cup of honey walnuts (I used Fresh Gourmet)
- 2 teaspoons of olive oil
- pinch of dried or fresh thyme
- a few grinds of freshly cracked pink peppercorns
- salt to taste
- FOR THE DRESSING:
- ½ cup of mayonnaise
- ½ cup of sour cream
- ¼ cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
- the zest of 1 lemon
- 2 Tablespoons of honey
- salt & pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Place the pears, cut side up, on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Brush the pears with the olive oil.
- Sprinkle with thyme & pepper to taste.
- Bake for 35-38 minutes, until the pears take on a golden color around the edges.
- Let cool slightly.
- To prepare the dressing, place the mayo, sour cream, honey, lemon juice, lemon zest in a mini food processor or blender.
- Mix until creamy.
- If you want the dressing thicker, add a little more sour cream.
- If you need to thin it out, add a little more lemon juice or a splash of milk or cream.
- Season with salt & pepper to taste.
- Toss the cabbage, fennel & shallots together in a large bowl.
- Pour 1 cup of dressing over the salad and toss.
- Sprinkle on the pomegranate and walnuts.
- Toss to combine.
- Add additional dressing if desired.
- Place the salad on a serving dish.
- Top with pears.
All of my salads and dressings are just a starting place for your imagination. So feel free to add or swap ingredients and do what works for you!