Librarian: “Oh, looks like you’ve got a book overdue.”
Me, acting casual: “Do I?”
Librarian: “Yes… Memories of Philippine Kitchens?”
Me: “Oh, right. Can I renew it?”
Librarian: “No, it’s on hold for someone else.”
Me: “Oh, um, okay. I’ll bring it right in.”
Reader, I can assure you, that was a bald-faced lie.
I apologize to the other New York Public Library patron who is patiently waiting for this book, but I am not returning this cookbook anytime soon.
Memories of Philippine Kitchens is not only a.) totally gorgeous and b.) incredibly fascinating, but that salad (slaw? slawlad?) is dressed with one of the greatest salad dressings I have ever eaten.
Salad dressing adapted from the Kangkong Salad recipe in Memories of Philippine Kitchens:
1/3 cup vinegar (I’ve used rice and red wine vinegars)
4.5 tsp sugar
1 tsp olive oil
2 tsp mustard (optional; I prefer it without)
up to 1 tsp chili sauce (sriracha or sambal olek)
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
If using as a salad dressing, add 1/4 cup water. Otherwise, whisk to combine all ingredients.
For the slaw pictured above, pour dressing over half a red cabbage and two or three cucumbers, all sliced very thinly. (I used this slicer to shred the cucumbers into the long strips you see.)
Refrigerate for a couple hours, during which time, the cucumbers will leech out some water and dilute the dressing a bit.
Just don’t blame me if this dressing turns you into a library scofflaw as well.