The last time I was in Philadelphia my family took us out to Fette Sau (which is German for “fat pig”). Though the north isn’t known for its barbecue and slaw, Fette Sau might be changing that notion. The brisket and wings were outstanding, yet I found my favorite item on the menu was the slaw that accompanied my meal. I wish I’d had the gumption to go up and ask a member of the kitchen team what was in the slaw, but in the moment my head and mouth were too busy to do anything but savor the flavors. This is my best guess at what was in the dish, as admittedly that whole trip is a bit of a blur given that it involved about thirty-two hours of car time (1,600 miles), two children in diapers, and one grown-up. But I do remember the slaw. . . .
SERVES 6 TO 8 / PREP TIME: 10 MINUTES / TOTAL TIME: 10 MINUTES
1 head red or green cabbage or a mix of both, shredded
2 to 3 jalapeño peppers, seeded and sliced into long pieces
2 carrots, shredded (optional)
¼ cup fresh lime juice (about 2 limes)
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon adobo sauce from canned chipotles
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ cup mayonnaise, store-bought or homemade
Salt and black pepper
1. In a large bowl, combine the cabbage, jalapeños, and carrots (if using).
2. Meanwhile, in a small food processor or blender, combine the lime juice, cilantro, adobo sauce, cumin, and mayo.
3. Pour the dressing over the cabbage and mix well (hands are always appropriate mixing utensils). Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.
VARIATIONS: Go on and get crazy with adding in other vegetables that appeal to you. Some thinly sliced bell peppers, jicama, other kinds of cabbage, and sliced red onions are all great additions to this slaw! Add more chipotle sauce for even more kick.
Mashed Sweet Potatoes (with Variations)
A perennial favorite in Paleo circles, mashed sweet potatoes are a perfect side dish for just about anything. These potatoes are sweet all on their own, so adding extra sweetener really is not necessary, but a tiny bit of maple syrup (with the bacon pecan variation) is a nice touch if you want.
SERVES 4 TO 6 / PREP TIME: 10 MINUTES / TOTAL TIME: 25 MINUTES
2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed (see Note)
About 2 tablespoons coconut milk or heavy cream, plus more as needed
2 tablespoons fat (ghee, butter, or coconut butter)
½ teaspoon salt
1. Place the sweet potatoes in a large pan and cover with water. About 15 minutes. Drain and return to the pot. (Alternatively, you can steam in a steamer basket for about 15 minutes.)
2. Add the coconut milk, fat, and salt to the hot sweet potatoes and use a hand mixer, immersion blender, or potato masher to mash. Add more liquid to achieve your desired consistency.
Mashed Chipotle Lime Sweet Potatoes: After making the mash, add 1 tablespoon (or less if you don’t want it too spicy) chipotle sauce or adobo sauce from canned chipotles in adobo, and the juice and grated zest of 1 lime.
Mashed Bacon Pecan Sweet Potatoes: After making the mash, add 4 slices cooked and crumbled bacon and ¼ cup chopped toasted pecans.