Tuesday, 17 November 2015


I love a good homemade coleslaw, whether it be trying to emulate my Nan's classic slaw or a minty chili version, they always taste so much fresher than the stuff you buy in packets from the supermarket. This chunky ranch slaw was never meant to be a recipe on here but came about by accident hence the name. We thought we had a bottle of ranch dressing that we were going to use to coat our slaw but upon finding it had in fact been binned we had to create our own. The result was too good not to share with you all!

Let's talk about the veg. We have used red cabbage and white onion here but feel free to mix and match and use white cabbage or red onions instead. Carrots are a must have in a slaw so don't be leaving those out! What you may notice is how thick and chunky we have chopped our carrots. This actually works really well and by using a crinkle cutter, normally reserved for chopping potatoes for crinkle cut chips, you add an additional textural experience which give this slaw an extra dimension.

You can pick up a crinkle cutter online for next to nothing but if you don't have one to hand right this second then you can cut your veg straight, it's no biggy! If you don't like the sound of the chunky veg either you can be a bit more traditional and shred all your veg more thinly. Do give the chunk a go if you have never tried it before though! I wasn't too sure it was going to work but it was big, bold and great served alongside some soft roast potatoes.

As I mentioned, my ranch sauce came about as I had to improvise and make something as I didn't have that bottle of ready made sauce that I thought was sitting in the fridge. It may not be the most traditional recipe for a ranch dressing but I loved it and I'm sure you will too. Some of the ingredients can be changed. The garlic and herb cream cheese is a bit of a cheat so you can use a plain cream cheese if you want and then grate in some garlic for the same effect. Not everyone will have buttermilk to hand either so if you can't get hold of anything then replace it with a spoon of creme fraiche, sour cream or plain yogurt.

The sriracha is optional, the cayenne and the paprika will give you a nice kick of heat already, I just like to crank mine up a notch. The most random ingredient is the tbsp of gherkin vinegar. You know when you buy a jar of gherkins in vinegar, it's that vinegar you want. It adds a delicious acidity to the dressing and definitely pushes forward the slight American vibe to the slaw. Don't have pickles in your fridge? A tsp of white wine vinegar should do the trick.

Lets get too it. Make sure you only add the dressing to the veg just before your ready to serve. That way the veg will remain crisp and country rather than being slightly soggy if they are left to sit together in a bowl for too long:

Chunky Ranch Coleslaw

1 Chopped Red Cabbage
2 Peeled Carrots, Cut Into Chunky Strips
1 Sliced Large White Onion
1 Heaped Tbsp Garlic And Herb Cream Cheese
1 Tsp Chopped Fresh Parsley Leaves
1 Heaped Tbsp Mayonnaise
1 Tbsp Buttermilk
1 Tbsp Gherkin Vinegar
Splash Of Worcestershire Sauce
1 Tsp Chopped Fresh Dill
1 Tsp Dried Oregano
Pinch Of Cayenne Pepper 
Pinch Of Paprika
Splash Of Sriracha
Salt And Pepper To Season
1 Tbsp Chopped Chive

  1. Begin by chucking the cabbage, carrots and onion in a bowl and toss everything together so everything is evenly distributed. Leave the bowl to one side.
  2. In a second bowl add in the cream cheese, parsley, mayonnaise, buttermilk, gherkin vinegar and Worcestershire sauce and mix everything together until well combined. Add in the dill, oregano, cayenne pepper and sriracha and mix again until well combined. Taste and season with as much salt and pepper that you think it needs.
  3. Slowly add the dressing to the bowl with the veg and begin to mix everything together until all the veg is lightly coated with the dressing. Sprinkle over the chopped chives and serve.
You might find that there is still a bit of dressing left over. Pop this into an air tight container and keep it in the fridge for up too a week and you can use it to dress a little lunch time salad. As for slaw itself, you can either serve it in the big bowl and get everyone to dig in or split it up as you see fit. It's great served at a BBQ, which I know it's the wrong time of year for right now but keep this recipe in your mind for when those summer nights do stroll around again. It just goes to show sometimes the most accidental and unplanned meals can turn out to be the best so never be afraid to throw caution to the wind and experiment!

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