After discovering that kale is one of the easiest plants to grow organically, we’ve ended up with an abundance of this amazing leafy green in our veggie garden and I just can’t use it fast enough!
This wasn’t always the case however, and it has been a bit of trial and error to get to this point.
When we planted our first curly kale plants they grew beautifully for six months and I was furiously blending it into smoothies, making numerous batches of kale chips (my all time favourite recipe being these smokey BBQ kale chips) and super food slaws.
But as time went on we watched our beautiful organic kale plants slowly become infested with white fly, aphids and a number of unidentifiable little mites.
We tried all the natural remedies like blasting them off with a hose and spraying the leaves with a mild soapy solution, and when that didn’t work we tried the organic bug sprays from the garden centre.
It eventually got to the point where there were so many bugs on our curly kale that it became impossible to clean them off before eating, so we sadly we had to pull the plants out and compost them.
Not one to give up easily, this year I tried planting a different type of kale to see how it faired, and so far so good! Our new cavalo nero plants have grown beautifully (if a little crazily!), and once again I can barely use them fast enough!
With all this beautiful dark green kale piling up, I decided it was high time I created a new kale slaw recipe given my last two: smoke and fire slaw with coconut, lime and ginger and kale and beetroot slaw with spicy chilli and ginger dressing were so popular!
To create a super slaw all you need is a couple of colourful root vegetables that can easily be sliced or grated, some nuts or seeds for a bit of crunch, and a dressing to bring it altogether.
For this new recipe I decided to use a combination of fennel, beetroot and kale. Fennel has a beautiful crunch and mild aniseed flavour which combines perfectly with the sweet beetroot and bitter kale. Toss it altogether with fresh herbs such as parsely and mint, toasted hazelnut dukkah and a spicy turmeric ginger dressing, and you have a very flavoursome plant based super slaw!
This slaw is packed with phytonutrients, antioxidants and fibre thanks to the kale, beetroot and fennel. Turmeric and ginger provide beautiful anti-inflammatory properties, but be sure to include the black pepper as it’s piperine content ensures the active ingredient in turmeric (curcumin) is more efficiently absorbed. Parsley provides powerful alkalising properties that fight acidosis in the body (the state where disease can occur), and mint is very calming and soothing for the digestion. The hazelnut dukkah adds a lovely crunch and adds a source of protein from the nuts and seeds, so you can eat this slaw simply on it’s own or as a beautiful accompaniment.
I hope you love this Fennel, Kale & Beetroot Slaw, and if you make it I’d love to hear from you!
Fennel, Kale and Beetroot Slaw with Hazelnut Dukkah and Ginger Turmeric Dressing
Prep time: 30 minutes
8 stems kale (curly or cavalo nero)
1 large bulb fennel
1 handful parsley
1 handful mint
3 Tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive, hemp, macadamia or avocado oil
3 Tbsp water
1 tsp raw honey
1 clove garlic
2cm piece ginger
1 tsp ground turmeric
1/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
pinch cayenne pepper
1 cup hazelnuts
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1 Tbsp black sesame seeds
1 Tbsp white sesame seeds
1 Tbsp fennel seeds
1 Tbsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp pink Himalayan salt
Wash the cavalo nero well and use a sharp knife to remove the thick central stems. Roll the leaves up into a bundle and finely slice into strips, then transfer to a large mixing bowl.
Peel and grate the beetroot and add to the bowl.
Wash the fennel and use a sharp knife or mandolin to finely slice into rounds, then add to the bowl.
Lastly, rinse the parsley and mint, discard the stems and add the leaves to the bowl. Toss all the ingredients together until evenly combined.
To make the dressing:
Place all the ingredients into a high speed blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Add as much of the dressing as you like to the slaw and toss to combine. Any leftover dressing can be stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.
To make the dukkah:
Place the hazelnuts into a 160ºC oven and roast until they just start to change colour – approximately 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, allow to cool then gently rub the skins off and roughly chop.
Place the seeds in a dry fry pan over medium heat and shake around the pan until you begin to smell the spices – this should only take a minute or two. Remove the seeds from the pan and combine with the pink salt and chopped hazelnuts.
Sprinkle over the slaw and store any leftovers in an airtight jar at room temperature. The dukkah will keep for months.