This weekend was a whirlwind of white tulle and flash rainstorms and weaving through downtown streets, as I took off for a wedding in Chicago. Less than 24 hours wasn’t quite enough time to soak in its midwest glory, but I did manage to: hop a clean, on-time train from the airport (I love taking public transportation whenever I visit a new place, is that weird?) to my downtown hotel, meet up with a college friend, trek to Taste of Chicago in Millenium Park, sample a mere one Chicagoan dish before the sky opened up and absolutely soaked us to the bone before we could even blink, traverse back to the hotel in squishy shoes, power nap, slide into heels and false eyelashes and celebrate the marriage of friends Ashley and Jason all night long.
You know Ashley because the logo for this coffee shop is her creation. I know Ashley because we spent four years together at Syracuse, one of which was spent abroad in Italy as partners in crime. Though we never saw each other much after college, we kept in touch through weekly marathon G-chat sessions and have counseled each other through relationships and career, city, and life changes and the Bush Administration. A talented designer, a hilarious thrill-seeker, and a beautiful bride. Love this girl.
We all knew her wedding would be aesthetically pleasing (I mentioned she’s a talented designer, right?), but so was the buffet. We had dishes that nodded to both bride (Maryland crabcakes) and groom (Kansas City barbecue), but I was really delighted by the coleslaw. The coleslaw?! you ask. Who cares about coleslaw when you’ve got pulled pork and blue crab and pretzel bread and carrot cake? I love slaws of all kind because it’s the very best way to get raw crunchy cabbage in your life. This particular slaw was dotted with red grapes and gorgonzola. Yum.
I made this vegan raw slaw years ago, and here I’m adding red grape halves for some Chicagoan flavah. Make extra dressing because it’s mayo-free and healthy and you will be obsessed with it. Add extra avocado to thicken it up and you can add it to other salads, sandwiches, etc. Happy Meatless!
Chicago-Style Raw Slaw
For the dressing:
1.5 c. cold plain almond milk
1/2 c. unpasteurized apple cider vinegar
1/2 c. olive oil
1/4 c. avocado (double this for an extra-thick version)
1/4 c. raw agave nectar
1 tsp. sea salt
For the slaw:
1 sm. head red cabbage, shredded
4 med. carrots, shredded
1 lg. red onion, finely chopped
1 c. seedless red grapes, halved
1 tbsp. fresh dill, chopped (more to taste if you like)
2 tbsp. celery seed
sea salt & pepper to taste