Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Kefir & Herb Coleslaw

We have been blessed with getting deals and free food lately. Our fridge and freezers are overflowing with expired yogurt and kefir. I am really trying hard not to waste food so I am trying to find ways to use up this abundance of dairy.

Yogurt makes its way into most meals in our week- whether it is in a breakfast smoothie, combined with some sour cream as a dip for nearly everything for the kids, mixed with some olive oil and herbs as a salad dressing, or in its naturally delicious state as a dessert. It is so versatile!

Kefir, on the other hand, is a bit more unusual if you aren't used to it. Eastern-European in origin, it is also a fermented milk product that used to be kept in animal skins. When the milk was left to ferment, it resulted in an effervescent drink. Its healing properties were revered for centuries. The story of the kefir grain is a fascinating one. Google it if you have a minute or two. But really all you really need to know is that it is extremely good for you and that it is one of those things that has been passed along to us as a gift from past generations. Pretty cool.

So, I wasn't sure what to do with it because it is a bit more acidic and has some different notes that yogurt. I happended to have some shredded cabbage in the fridge and decided to try a Kefir Coleslaw! I got to work and threw in some of the same things I'd put into a salad dressing and it was delicious! The colour of the pale green coleslaw left something to be desired so I raided the herb garden and voila- Kefir and Herb Coleslaw resulted. I am quite pleased with myself on this one-  a great addition to a summer meal!

I recently read that kefir is great to add to bread to make a sour dough. I will be trying that too. Otherwise, I am sure it would work fabulously in place of buttermilk in any kind of baking.

Kefir & Herb Coleslaw
If you don't have kefir, substitute plain yogurt. You may need to thin it slightly with milk to get your desired consistency. This tastes nice and crisp for about a day.

1/2 cup plain kefir
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp dijon mustard
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 head of green cabbage, shredded or sliced thinly
1/2 cup mixed chopped herbs (dill, parsley, chives)

1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together kefir, vinegar, honey, mustard and salt. Add cabbage and herbs. Yum!