The heat is definitely on now that we’re smack in the middle of the summer months. What I crave during these days is a light salad, but am always looking for ways to get creative and try different fruits and veggies.
I love jícama–a crunchy and sweet root veggie–and usually like to eat it just cut up in pieces with lots and lots of lime, salt and chile en polvo. In El Salvador it´s street vendor fare and served in a plastic bag.
I found some nice jícamas in my local market and turned to Chef Marcela Valladolid´s Fresh Mexico cookbook to find a different way to prepare it in a salad that would be good for a summer grill day.
I found her Jícama, Beet and Arbol Chile Slaw recipe and adapted it a bit to fit my family´s tastes:
1. No arbol chile because I want my girl to eat it and we still can´t convince her that pica is good.
2. Switched the balsamic vinegar to a Malt Vinegar by Holland House because my husband detests the balsamic variety. He always has and won´t go near it. The malt vinegar still has a strong and distinct flavor that doesn´t overpower. It´s a perfect substitute.
3. Used persian cucumbers instead of the regular kind because they are crunchier, no seeding needed and they are the perfect bite-size when sliced.
This easy-to-make slaw comes out a beautiful vibrant red and is just the perfect mix of juicy, crunchy and sweet to satisfy a summer craving. It´s a hit.
Here´s my adaptation of Chef Marcela Valladolid recipe for a
Juicy and Crunchy Jícama, Beet and Cucumber Slaw
1/2 cupe soy sauce (I use tamari)
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
2 teaspoons Holland House Malt Vinegar (visit the Holland House site to check out the 11 flavors of their cooking wines and premium vinegars).
1 tablespoon sugar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 cups shredded peeled jícama
3 medium raw beets, peeled and shredded
1 cup thinly sliced persian cucumbers (no need to peel them, just wash thoroughly)
You can´t peel root vegetables with a peeler, it´s best to use a sharp knife to remove the tough skin on the jícama and the beets. Then, use shred and shred and shred away. Bigger kids can have fun helping you here. Just be careful because the red beet juice likes to splatter and stain all over the place.
Once the cucumbers have been cut into thin slices, mix it with the shredded jícama and beets.
In a bowl, mix the soy or tamari sauce, sesame oil, lime juice, Holland House malt vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper.
Pour the dressing into the jícama, beets and cucumber and toss until well coated and the slaw turns a nice pinkish-red color. Four-year-old girls make excellent assistants for this stage!
Chef Marcela Valladolid recommends to serve this salad cold, so cover and put in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, or until chilled, before serving.
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Disclosure: We are being compensated as part of a campaign to share our favorite Latino-inspired recipes using various Mizkan products.