Happy Friday, lovelies! You’ve made it through the ups and downs, the day-to-day hectic nature that is our lives.
Most Friday nights, I’m ready to unwind, have some Michelle time, and go to bed as soon as possible. With the sun setting earlier and earlier each week, my geriatric bedtime tendencies are enabled more and more (excluding my 89 year-old grandmother who is the most energetic party animal I’ve ever met...hey JenJen).
Into our first week of October, I’ve already harped on my love and overenthusiasm of pumpkin. But my next favorite fallstar (yes, a fall all star) is the apple. The tart granny smith, the tangy pink lady, and the champion of them all, the honeycrisp, are some of my favorite snacking apples. Consistently juicy, balanced, and crunchy, these are my go-to friends for almond butter scooping, salad topping, and all-around munching.
I’m about to push you out of your comfort zone for a moment, though. Y’all, today we’re putting apples into our slaw. Stay calm. It’s going to be okay.
Usually, cole slaw is an overthought on a long row of potluck sides that is goopy, mushy, and bland. A little cabbage, a little carrot, and about a gallon of mayonnaise are what is going on in that vat of slaw on the table.
No thanks. I need some texture, please.
I absolutely love slaw when done right. Growing up, slaw was (and still is) always a necessary companion to barbeque (and you better know by now that barbeque=pulled pork). My mom understood how slaw, just like a proper salad, does not need to be drowned in dressing. She also understood that slaw, just like any other salad, is a blank canvas waiting to be exploded with new flavors and textures.
If you’re not there yet in your schema of slaw, it’s time for a paradigm shift, y’all. Today, we’re keeping the usual cabbage, carrots, and creamy yet tart dressing. However, we are upping the game with sliced apples, dried cranberries, and chopped nuts. Can you say texture explosion?
For the dressing, you put all of the ingredients in a bowl or, even easier, a mason jar and shakey shakey. To keep that creaminess without going down the mayonnaise road (I am mayo-phobic), you can use coconut or plain yogurt, just make sure it’s unsweetened. A little vinegar, salt, pepper, and, the secret ingredient, apple butter. It adds to the richness of the dressing and adds a burst of fall flavor. If you use a store-bought one (I did), make sure it doesn’t have high fructose corn syrup. I’m not a fan, and you’re body isn’t, either.
This weekend, you may be firing up the grill for burgers or smoking a pork shoulder (ugh or beef brisket…insert my eye roll here), and this apple slaw begs a smoky, meaty companion to boogie with.
If you want to get really wild, you could sub out the apples for a firm pair, like a d’anjou. Those puppies are crisp and slightly sweet, making an interesting contribution to the slaw, too.
Last thing I love about this slaw is that it gets better the longer it sits. Like any marinated salad, this bad boy gets even more flavorful with every passing day. After about 5 days, though, it does start to push the crispness factor and get a little softer than I like…just a heads up on that one.
Healthy Happy Texan
I'm a Foodie, Fitness Instructor, and Follower of Christ. Add a passion for teaching others, dark chocolate, bacon, and dogs -- and that's me in a box.
Come on, let's live a little!