Black Eyed Pea Slaw Salad

Phew! Has this record-breaking summer heat been getting to anyone else? With the temperatures rising, I’ve had no interest in cooking. As a result, I’m often finding myself in the kitchen thinking up any meal that doesn’t require the stove. I decided to try a black eyed pea slaw for a kale salad after having a Thai cabbage slaw with black beans at a restaurant recently.

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Coming from a southern family, I grew up with black eyed peas served atop heaping spoonfuls of mashed potatoes next to a slice of cornbread. I haven’t seen many places in the Pacific Northwest whole-heartedly embracing the black eyed pea nearly as much as black beans, chickpeas or lentils. After dwelling on that realization, I decided that I wanted to add some black eyed peas to my salad for a cool meal on a warm day.

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I’m currently going through a shredded kale addiction. To be honest, most of the kale that has passed through my fridge has gone into a juicer or has been thrown in with sauteed vegetables. Previous to the past few weeks, I haven’t found it attractive to put my kale in a salad. Once I started harvesting mass amounts of kale from my raised bed, I decided I needed to get over my fear of the toughness of kale in salads. After experimenting, I found that kale is much easier to love when it’s shredded to the size equivalent of cabbage in coleslaw. If you find yourself disliking the texture or taste of raw kale, give shredding a try–a vinaigrette soaks into the shreds so tastily and renders it much less tough.

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I prefer my vinaigrette on the acidic side. I can’t help it–I just love the way vinegar tastes. If you aren’t as much of a vinegar lover, the typical ratio of oil to vinegar is 3:1 instead of the 1:1 this recipe calls for. Feel free to throw this slaw on any kind of lettuce, or eat it by itself. The Beacon Food Forest sent me home with some mizuna recently (thank you, Julie!), so I tossed that in with the kale.

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Black Eyed Pea Slaw Salad (Serves 2-3)

  • 6-8 medium/large kale leaves
  • 2 cups (1 can) black eyed peas, drained
  • 2 large carrots, grated
  • 1 cup cooked corn
  • 2-3 medium-sized radish, diced
  • 2-3 small turnips, diced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider or wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tablespoon maple syrup, honey or agave syrup
  • Salt, pepper, sage to taste
  1. Remove the stalks from kale leaves with a knife, then finely chop into thin, short strips.
  2. Combine kale, black eyed peas, grated carrots, corn, diced radish and radish in a bowl.
  3. In a separate container, combine olive oil, vinegar, syrup or honey, salt, pepper and sage (fresh or dried). Whisk or shake until the oil, vinegar and spices are combined.
  4. Pour vinaigrette on top of slaw salad and stir until all ingredients are mixed.
  5. Eat immediately, or let the flavors intensify in the refrigerator overnight.

Happy Eating,

Lacie

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