Saturday marked the third birthday of Planet VegMel, your one-stop shop for Melbourne's veg blogs (aggregating the feeds of, at last count, 57 vegan and vegetarian blogs). To mark the occasion, Steph and Danni kindly organised a potluck picnic in Edinburgh Gardens (long-time readers will note the similarities to last year's vegmel birthday shenanigans). They also put together this fabulous zine, featuring cover art by Cindy and some fabulous articles on veggie Melbourne.
Cindy and I were both feeling like making fairly simple potluck contributions this year and, with a red cabbage languishing in our fridge, this Ottolenghi salad (skip past the lamb shanks if you're following that link!) seemed like a pretty safe option. It's vegan, gluten-free, has the typical Ottolenghi array of flavours and textures and meant we'd at least have something vaguely healthy to eat before all the desserts.
There's a little bit of work involved - lots of chopping and grating and some careful dry-roasting of nuts and seeds - but it's really only about forty-five minutes of faffing about. The results were pretty good - the nuts and seeds adding some crunch to all the veggies, and the herbs and dressing keeping things tasty. It wasn't the standout of the picnic (Hello vegan cheesecake! Hi delicious soy bombs!), but it was fresh and pretty good - definitely one to make again. In typing up the recipe, I realised that I completely forgot to add in the dried apricots - they'd have added some nice sweetness to the salad, so don't make my mistake!
Beetroot, carrot and red cabbage slaw
(based on Ottolenghi's recipe)
3 tablespoons of champagne vinegar
2 tablespoons of maple syrup
1/4 cup olive oil
1.5 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon of minced ginger
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
250g red cabbage, shredded finely
2 medium beetroots, peeled and grated
1 fat carrot, grated
25g parsley, roughly chopped
10g dill, roughly chopped
140g walnuts, toasted
40g pumpkin seeds, toasted
2 tablespoons of poppy seeds
100g dried apricots, sliced (omitted accidentally in our version!)
Whisk together the dressing ingredients in a small bowl
Combine all the salad ingredients in a large bowl and stir the dressing through (if you're making this ahead of time, don't add the nuts until you're about to serve it up to make sure they stay a bit crunchy).