Tomatillo Slaw

In case you were wondering…guacamole wasn’t the only vegetable component of my fiesta. I guess corn is a vegetable, but somehow tamale pie doesn’t really count as a salad in my book – when you are eating hearty, spicy food, you need some cool, crisp, refreshing side. It should be raw, it should be crunchy, and since the other dishes are so rich and intricate, it should be simple.
It should be Tomatillo Slaw. This coleslaw uses traditional taco accompaniments, like lime, cabbage and radishes to create a light, tangy coleslaw. There are many variations you could make here – use yogurt instead of mayo, leave out the cumin, add some chipotle powder, add cilantro but not scallions…the whole thing here is to make it your own. This isn’t about a decadent, creamy dish, it’s about a bright, clean tasting one. And it’s about using jarred salsa to make your life easier. It’s about:
Tomatillo Slaw

1 Head cabbage, cut into thin strips
2 Cups mayonnaise
1 17.6 Oz jar tomatillo salsa(salsa verde)
Zest and juice of 6 limes
12 Radishes
Cumin, salt and pepper to taste
 1 Bunch each cilantro and scallions(optional)

 1)Wash the radishes thoroughly under cold water, then cut the top and bottom off the radishes…

 and slice them as thinly as possible(that is my sister’s murderer’s thumb, not mine. I should only be so lucky!).

 2)Place the radishes and cabbage in a large bowl.

 3)In another bowl, combine the mayonnaise,


 lime zest, juice and scallions/cilantro if you are adding them.

 4)Mix to combine and taste for seasonings. Add the spices in quantities that please you. If it is too tangy, throw in some more mayo. Too bland? Add some salt or scallions. You need to make this the way that YOU like it.

5)Add the dressing to the slaw, mix to combine and let it rest for at least 1 hour or up to 3 hours. Before you serve it, taste for spices again – you may need to ad more salt or pepper, since the cabbage absorbs the flavors quite thoroughly.

6) Enjoy!
This coleslaw is deceptively easy to make. I say deceptively because the tastes are so complex – the tangy tomatillos, the slightly bitter radish, the smoky cumin and the sharp lime juice all combine to create a layered dish that is really more like a salad than a simple slaw. The cilantro and scallions add fragrance and pungency that I enjoy, but if the rest of the meal is strongly flavored, you may want to leave them out and make the slaw milder and more of a background flavor. 
Perfect with tacos, chili or a hearty chicken mole, this slaw is one you will make again and again, because every fiesta needs some fiber.


  1. Sippity Sup says:

    All slaws are good but your slaws are great! GREG

  2. I really like this; what do you think about adding some chili peppers – nothing too hot, but enough to let you know they're there?

  3. Fritos and Foie Gras says:

    @Sippity-Aww, thanks so much!!
    @Justin-Yes! I think some slivered serranos or jalapenos would be just fantastic in there!

  4. Regarding your sister’s so-called murderer’s thumb, you should do more research. Us “murderers” merely have deep feelings which we keep in check for a long time, thus it builds up.

    Also see this research re: the stub thumb genetic variant, linked to short 4th toe:

    So, hey, your sister may have Jewish blood, and may even have stars of david etched on her palms, the way I do.


  1. […] This brisket is so much more than tasty. It is meat at its most primal – deep, zesty, a little sweet, and incredibly savory. It carries the smoky taste of the Chipotle Tabasco with the sweet and sour flavors of tsimmis. The reduced cooking liquid means that the brisket is fork tender without falling apart, and the fat cap melts as it cooks, enriching the meat. The spice becomes intense as it sits, but doesn’t turn hot or burning. This is something that even a spice wimp could handle. With some of that thick BBQ sauce ladled over it and some grilled onions, this is a hearty and satisfying sandwich that is as delicious the night you make it as it is cold for breakfast the next day. Try it with potato salad or some Mexican influenced slaw. […]