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Kohlrabi and Cabbage Slaw (No Mayo)

This recipe is really just an idea, and not even an original one at that.


Take sweet and smoky beef or pork barbecue, put it on a sandwich or corn tortilla, and top with a bright, vinegary coleslaw.

The best thing about unoriginal ideas, though, is that they get changed up by convenience and by my CSA.  I had purple kohlrabi in the fridge and something had to be done with it.  I was inspired to make a more Fritz-friendly meal (read: including meat, served in something you can hold) by a super-delicious sandwich–the Carolina–from a Rochester food truck named Marty’s Meats.

Purple Kohlrabi

(OMG THAT LAST SENTENCE.  Sorry, Taylor, Mom, and all other editors who cringe when they read my blog).

I have spoken about my strong distaste for mayonnaise in previous posts (see this European Potato Salad post), so I knew that the coleslaw would have to just have vinegar in it, and absolutely no mayonnaise.  A little bit of foodgawkering later, and I had a recipe.

I guess at this point I'm just resigned to knowing that some of you judge me for the cat+table situation here.

I guess at this point I’m just resigned to knowing that some of you judge me for the cat+table situation here.

(Note: this recipe is just for the coleslaw.  For the beef barbecue, I tossed a bunch of random ingredients into the CrockPot without measuring.  I went with an Asian influence and used beef, rice wine vinegar, ginger, and 23598234 other ingredients.  Here’s a similarly inspired recipe (or follow the link below) if you need actual instructions and not just my wine-fueled ramblings).

(Just kidding about the wine-fueled part.  It’s Wednesday, for goodness’ sake).

(Am I?).


Kohlrabi and Cabbage Coleslaw (No Mayo)  Adapted from Cheese and Chocolate

  • 2 small-to-medium kohlrabi, peeled and sliced into matchsticks
  • 3 C cabbage, shredded (shredding tutorial in this post)
  • 1/2 C thinly sliced red onion
  • 5 T rice wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 T sugar
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/4-1/2 t red pepper flakes (start slowly here!).

Sadly, kohlrabi is a lot less pretty when is it peeled.  Usually kohlrabi is green (and looks just like the little aliens from Toy Story), but our farmer happened to see purple kohlrabi in a seed catalog and wanted to try it.  Tasted just like the way green kohlrabi did, if I remember correctly.

Purple Kohlrabi 2

Combine all the ingredients and let sit in the fridge in a covered bowl for at least 30 minutes before serving, tossing several times so that the vinegar coats everything.

Kohlrabi Coleslaw

Serve only on top of some seriously decadent barbecue.


The acidic and tangy crunch of cabbage was exactly what the sweet barbecue beef needed, and I loved having an afterburn from the red pepper flakes (I measured them generously).


And no, I didn’t miss the mayonnaise at all.

I preferred this sandwich on a corn tortilla quickly heated up in a dry pan; Fritz is a firm believer in soft sandwich rolls.  To each his own, man.  (Plus, two small corn tortillas has fewer calories than a giant sandwich bun, plus plus my brain always prefers to eat “two” over “one”).


Grammar people–I’m sorry about this post.  I blame Wednesday.  To make you feel better, I would like to ask you a question that I have been pondering in my real-life context lately.  Less vs. Fewer.  Which one is right, when, and why?  Is one sometimes wrong?  The last lingering wisps of English: Don’t Bastardize the Language that Mr. Scotty instilled in me have been weakly suggesting to me that those terms are not as interchangeable as they first feel.

For funzies, here’s some pictures from our camping trip this weekend (I’ll try to post some different ones from my Instagram dump).

Sunset on our first night over Ontario Lake.

Sunset on our first night over Ontario Lake.

Such romantic, so bird poop.

Such romantic, so bird poop.


These three.

These three.

The last supper.

The last supper. Plus supermoon.

Didn't bring a tripod, so blurry.  But still cool.

Didn’t bring a tripod, so blurry. But still cool.

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.fullmeasureofhappiness.com/2014/07/16/kohlrabi-and-cabbage-slaw-no-mayo/


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  1. Bernadette

    As someone who had a cat who was the centerpiece every evening during dinner, I certainly ain’t judging you. Just consider cat hair a decoration like parsley sprigs. :)

  2. Anonymous

    It’s fewer if you can count it, less if you can’t.

    So if you’d say “how many” instead of “how much” it’s fewer. So your choice of fewer is correct – calories: how many calories = fewer. If you’d said fat: how much fat = less.


    1. Lauren Zietsman

      wow, what a great explanation! Thanks!

  3. Michelle S.

    Love it, Lauren. Was wondering what to do with kohlrabi and this is great… can adapt to paleo better without the mayo! Love your camping photos, looks like it was a great time. Love to you and so happy you are blogging again!

  4. Hannah

    This post was hilarious, and I vote “probably” on the wine ramblings. Also what is the opposite of less? More? What is the opposite of fewer? Also more? many? I think there should be a comparable adjective.

  5. Chris @ Shared Appetite

    Loving those camping photos! They are really awesome!! And my wife will love this slaw… she’s not a fan of mayo in slaws… she’s all about the vinegar!

  6. Nuts about food

    I am a language nerd, so love when these questions come up! And by the way, I think blogs are supposed to sound colloquial and spontaneous, so it doesn’t bother me in the least. I mean, have you ever seen some of the things I write??

    1. Lauren Zietsman

      :) yeah, that is a good point! It doesn’t bother ME to see things written in a more friendly, chatty voice, but I do sometimes worry that people run screaming away from my blog sometimes.

  7. Lindsey

    I just found your blog while searching for a honey glazed chicken recipe on google.
    I read your About me and felt like we were friends immediately :)
    I am also in the medical field, an amateur photographer, blogger, baker, and wife.
    I have read through a lot of your blog and love it already. I will be faithfully following.
    Amazing pictures and wonderful recipes!

    1. Lauren Zietsman

      glad to have you! thanks for the comment :)

  8. Hannah

    This looks like the perfect thing to make as a thank you for my mom when she comes to help me pack up my apartment this weekend, you should definitely make your pork recipe into its own post too! I’m sure what you added to it made it tons more flavorful than the recipe you adapted it from.

    1. Lauren Zietsman

      Hope she likes it! Next time I make it, I’ll definitely write it all down :)

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