The main reason I am posting this recipe is because the Napa cabbage we’ve been getting in our farm share lately has convinced me there is no prettier vegetable on earth. From those lacy leaves to that ombre green color, Napa cabbage is seriously stunning. I don’t often pick up a vegetable simply because it looks nice—I mean, there was that one time—but if I were going to start doing it again, Napa would be the one. It’s a star. And talking about Napa cabbage’s beauty is worth talking about because, as far as lists go, Prettiest Vegetables is probably one of the only ones it’d make. I mean, when was the last time you ordered Napa cabbage at a restaurant? Received it on your plate when dining in the home of friends? Looked twice at it in the produce section and brought it home? What do you think about Napa cabbage, if you’ve tried it? Has it registered as something worth shouting about? The thing about Napa cabbage is, despite its curb appeal, it’s still cabbage. Roughage. A colon cleanser. That brings me to the second reason I am posting this recipe: It’s a good one for cleaning things out (and I don’t mean from your refrigerator).
I haven’t talked about it a lot here, but at the beginning of 2013, Tim and I embarked on a series of cleanses. The process was a little intensive, the sort of thing you don’t talk about at the table (if you catch my drift), but the process was also good. In the thick of it, we did a series of short fasts interrupted by heavy vegetables, the idea being to cleanse (through fasting) and flush (through roughage). And still, this many months later, when I eat a plate piled high with a salad like this one, those cleanses are what I think of.
Am I telling you you should eat this salad to cleanse your colon? Yes, I very well might be. But only as I also tell you to eat it for other reasons: To cheer for that sad but beautiful Napa cabbage, for example, the way you might root for the underdog football team; to make a meal that will make you feel wonderfully full, the way only cruciferous vegetables can do; or, there is this, because it tastes good.
I’ll leave which motivations matter to you up to you.