Prepared with fresh vegetables that have been tossed in a homemade dressing and seasoned just right, Jalapeno Buttermilk Ranch Coleslaw is a great side anytime!
The Thomas-Ewing household loves a good coleslaw. We eat coleslaw quite often – even in the winter! I know that coleslaw is usually considered a summer side dish, but when something tastes this good, why limit it to such a short season?
We often eat coleslaw as a quick weeknight side dish. It’s so easy to prepare and goes great with chicken fingers or a salmon burger. Oftentimes, I’ll serve coleslaw with a sandwich, a few chips, and a dill pickle. Because dinnertime doesn’t have to be extravagant. It just has to be delicious and have variety.
Even though Jalapeno Buttermilk Ranch Coleslaw isn’t extravagant, it certainly is delicious. And it has a great variety of veggies, texture, and certainly flavour. And who can argue with the sanctity of anything married to a great homemade buttermilk ranch dressing?
LET’S TALK ABOUT THIS BUTTERMILK RANCH DRESSING!
A few paragraphs up, I mentioned that coleslaw makes a great weeknight side. That might mean that you don’t feel like preparing the dressing from scratch. And, really, Dear Reader, it’s okay if you don’t. I won’t judge you for buying a jar of dressing at the store. After all, I’m no stranger to a bottle of Hidden Valley dressing myself! (It’s my favourite store brand.)
But, if you’re so inclined, you can make the dressing yourself. It’s very easy! All you need is buttermilk, of course, and some sour cream. You basically just whisk those two together with a bunch of those dried herbs from your spice rack.
Let’s see, there’s some dried chives and parsley. And there’s also some garlic powder, celery salt, and some black pepper. I sometimes skip the salt, but you can use it if you choose to. Just do a taste test to see if it’s needed. I find that garlic powder tends to be a little salty sometimes, so you might skip the salt completely.
HOW TO PREPARE YOUR VEGGIES
When it comes to preparing vegetables, I’m a masochist. I actually do find so much pleasure in chopping vegetables. It’s my version of therapy! If you don’t care to spend the time to chop, you can shred, grate, dice to your hearts content using your food processor.
Here’s the thing though. A food processor will most likely over process. I like the inconsistency of handmade. I like the feeling of a job well done once all of that chopping is out of the way. More importantly, I’d rather wash up one knife and a cutting board rather than a 6-piece food processor!
Dicing and slicing is easy. You can do that your way. It is worth noting that you can leave the seeds in the jalapeno if you prefer this coleslaw to be more spicy. I think the only veggies in this recipe that need special attention is the cabbage and the carrots. I’ll explain both.
HOW TO JULIENNE A VEGETABLE
Please note that I julienned the carrots. To julianne is the process of slicing vegetables into what some refer to as matchsticks. It’s very thin, very sleek, sticks of vegetables – in this case, carrots.
Start by peeling the carrot and washing it. I like to pat the carrot dry with a paper towel. This helps to keep it from slipping on the cutting board. Lay the carrot with the fat end closest to you. The carrot should be on an extreme diagonal. Slice the carrot into very thin slices – about 1/8th of an inch.
Once done, pile about six or so of the sliced carrots on top of each other. Next, slice down through the pile to create matchstick pieces. This is referred to as julienning. If this isn’t clear, you can watch a video here.
HOW TO CUT CABBAGE
Preparing the cabbage can be daunting though. Let’s face it – cabbages are big and can be rather tough to cut through. I have watched home cooks butcher a cabbage simply because they did not cut it properly. The first thing you want to do is to cut the cabbage into manageable pieces.
Turn the cabbage upside down so that the core if facing up. Using a very large knife, cut through the center of the core, halving the whole cabbage into two even sections. Repeat with each half so that you have quartered the entire cabbage.
The key to easy chopping for this coleslaw is to keep the core intact. Do not remove it. It will hold all of those leaves in place. Working with one quarter at a time, start at the top and cut across the leaves in 1/4 inch slices. Once you reach the core, stop and discard the core section.
Use your hands to toss the cut cabbage to loosen it. Add it to a bowl and move on to the other sections. If you do not need to use all it of, wrap the quarters into plastic wrap and keep in the crisper section of your fridge.
ASSEMBLING YOUR COLESLAW
Putting all of this together couldn’t be easier! Getting the dressing thoroughly mixed through though, is sometimes troublesome. The secret is to use a large enough bowl to toss and stir without getting the veggies all over the place.
Personally, I like to have the dressing mixture whisked together first and set aside. I pile all of the veggies into a large bowl and toss them together first. Then, I add half of the dressing and toss. If I need more, I add more. If not, I refrigerate the coleslaw and the leftover dressing until I’m ready to serve.
Just before you serve the coleslaw, toss it again to redistribute the dressing. At this point, you can add more if needed. Serve and enjoy!
Jalapeno Buttermilk Ranch Coleslaw
- 6 cups green cabbage, shredded
- 1 cup red cabbage, shredded
- 1 cup carrots, julienned
- 2 large jalapenos, diced, seeds removed and discarded
- 1/4 cup sliced green onions.
- 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon sugar, optional
- 1 tablespoon dried chives
- 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- In a large bowl, toss together the red and green cabbage, carrots, jalapenos, green onions, and parsley. Set aside.
- Whisk together the buttermilk, sour cream, sugar, chives, celery salt, salt, ground black pepper, and garlic powder.
- Pour the dressing mixture over the veggies and toss to combine.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.