image of Napa cabbage on a cutting board courtesy of, via Wikipedia

Napa Ginger Beet Slaw

This is a snap to make, and a colorful, cleansing salad (it’s the beets and ginger). Speaking of beets, they are not only versatile, but nutrient-rich. A little goes a long way!  And about ginger, in ancient Rome, a pound of ginger equaled the price of a whole sheep. Ginger was so prized in China that entire dynasties rose and fell over this spicy root. Men went to war over ginger…

I have fallen in love with Napa cabbage because its texture is softer and more delicate (it’s easier to chew than regular cabbage). If you haven’t tried Napa cabbage, do, and let’s try growing it in our gardens this year as well!

Serves 6-8     

4 C thinly sliced Napa cabbage 3 Tbsp fresh ginger*(see note below)
2 smallish beets, about ½ lb ¼ C REAL extra virgin olive oil
1 C chopped flat parsley ¼ C lemon juice
1 C chopped red onion ¼ C lime juice
1 tsp Celtic or Himalayan sea salt ½ C oil-cured, pitted olives (I like Beldi)
1 tsp black pepper or Grains of Paradise 1 C crumbled feta cheese, optional

Scrub beets and trim. Don’t peel – why waste the nutrients and why waste the time? Sing an aria instead! Shred beets using the coarse grating blade of a food processor. Combine in a large bowl with remaining ingredients (except feta if you are using cheese). Toss and make sure everything is well-coated. Taste, adjust seasoning.

Salad tastes best if you cover and chill for an hour or so in the frig. It will easily keep several days. When you go to serve, crumble feta on top, if that is your pleasure.

Serving suggestions? How about with a baked potato and sliced avocado?

*I keep my ginger in the freezer so I don’t worry about spoilage. When I want some ginger (or turmeric, because I treat this root the same way), I take it out of the freezer and grate, frozen, using a fine, hand-held mandolin (grater). This is a relatively new tool for me, and I don’t know what I did without it all these years…. Don’t peel ginger (or turmeric) because you’re using organic. My brother, David Stark, ate this salad with great relish, and he says he hates ginger. There’s something about the fineness of the grating that just enhances the dish without screaming, “Ginger!” I started using ginger more frequently because of all those wonderful anti-inflammatory properties.

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