When the dog days set in, you just don’t feel like standing over a hot stove. Or even if you do, the air conditioning can’t keep up and you pay for it later. In the summertime, the staples of my diet tend to switch to salads and something off the grill (and perhaps a potato chip or two if I’m being honest), so when I saw Andrea Chesman’s Recipes from the Root Cellar, I realized that many of my favorite summer foods (potato salad, coleslaw, chicken salad, baked beans) actually contain what are considered “wintery” vegetables. And since fish tacos are one of my all-time favorite meals, this is what I’ll be topping them with next time….
Designed to replace the lettuce, tomato, and sour cream topping on tacos, this cabbage salad is creamy and mildly spiced to act as a foil for spicy meat or bean topping. But don’t restrict this delicious salad to a single role; it can be eaten on its own or used as a topping for a turkey or roast beef sandwich. If you’re not using this salad to mitigate the heat of another dish, ramp up the chipotle and lime juice for additional flavor.
3/4 cup mayonnaise
3/4 cup sour cream
3 tablespoons lime juice, or more to taste
2 tablespoons minced chipotle canned in adobo sauce, or more to taste
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 small head green or savoy cabbage, thinly sliced or shredded (6-8 cups)
1 carrot, peeled and shredded
1/8-1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
1. Mix the mayonnaise, sour cream, lime juice, and chipotle in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper and additional lime juice and chipotle, if desired.
2. Combine the cabbage, carrot, and onion in a large salad bowl. Add the dressing and toss to coat. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
3. Let stand for at least 30 minutes before serving. The salad holds up well in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours.
Kitchen note: Chipotles in adobo sauce are smoke-dried jalapeños in a vinegar sauce, usually found in cans wherever Mexican food is sold. A single can will hold more than this recipe needs, but you can store the leftovers in a glass or plastic container in the refrigerator, where they will keep for months.