I’m so glad broccoli is back at the Portland Farmers Market, because that means I can make one of my favorite dishes—sweet broccoli salad. The inspiration for this dish comes from a traditional Americana salad, traditionally made with broccoli, bacon, raisins, red onion, and a sweet dressing of apple cider vinegar, mayo, and sugar. Here, it gets a healthy update with crunchy kohlrabi, blood sugar-friendly coconut sugar, and homemade mayo (that’s way easier than you think).
Have you ever cooked with kohlrabi? This funny-looking plant belongs to the cabbage family and got its name from a German word meaning “cabbage-turnip”. They look like a root vegetable, but they grow above ground in a bulb shape, usually purple or green. The purple ones are a bit sweeter, and taste like a cauliflower or broccoli stem. Pro tip: the peel can be a bit woody, so slice it off with a paring knife before using, especially in salads.
The key to this salad is the super simple and adaptable dressing. The original (and simplest) version is below, but I’ve tried it a couple of ways and come up with a simple formula—2 parts creamy, 1 part vinegar, 1/2 part sweet. The creamy can be mayo, yogurt, sour cream, or whatever you’ve got. I like homemade mayo (see below!). The vinegar should be on the sweet side—I use apple cider vinegar, but I’m sure rice or red wine would be great. The sweet can be any kind of sugar, honey, maple syrup, or coconut palm sugar. I like to add a pinch of salt. Trust me, it’s hard to mess this up. I’d recommend starting with the original recipe and adjust it to your tastes!
Sweet & Crunchy Broccoli Salad
6 to 8 servings
- 1/2 lbs uncooked broccoli, cut into florets and blanched
- 1 kohlrabi, peeled and cut into thin slices or matchsticks
- 1/2 cup cashews, chopped
- 1/3 cup dried apricots, chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped red onion, diced
Sweet & Creamy Dressing
- 1 cup homemade mayonnaise
- 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar or to taste (or regular sugar or honey—honey is sweeter so you can use less)
Mix the broccoli, kohlrabi, cashews, apricots, and onions in a large bowl. In a second bowl, beat dressing ingredients together gently until smooth. About 10 minutes before serving, toss the salad with the dressing to allow flavors to meld.
No-Fail, Almost-Instant Homemade Paleo Mayo
- 1 egg, room temperature
- Juice of 1/2 lemon, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup plus 1 cup avocado oil (You can also use a mild olive oil, but don’t use extra virgin, the flavor is too strong)
Place the room temperature* egg, lemon juice, mustard, salt, and 1/4 cup of oil in a food processor. Blend for 20 seconds to combine. Keep the processor mixing and slowly stream in the other 1 cup of oil—it’s easy if your food processor has a small hole in the bottom of the cylindrical plunger that inserts into the feed tube, but you can also use a measuring cup with a spout. This should take a few minutes if you’re going slow enough! When the oil is incorporated, congrats! You’ve made your own mayo!
*If your egg is cold, just put in in a cup of warm tap water to warm it up!