Make Ahead

Shiso Slaw

October  4, 2022
2 Ratings
  • Serves 4, if you can find it in your heart to share this . . ..
Author Notes

I found inspiration for this at our Asian farmer's market where, if you get there early enough, you can get just picked green shiso. As I was sniffing a torn leaf, I remembered an apple slaw I'd made with Thai basil. Thinking that perhaps the green shiso, which has almost a cinnamon flavor, would also do well with apples, I tested it by creating this crunchy salad. To my delight, it works! This takes almost no time to put together, but should be made an hour or two ahead of time to allow the flavors to come together. Also, be sure to use a hard, tart apple, not just for the crunch, but also to stand up to the bold flavor of the shiso. I like using the first Ginger Golds of the season for this; a Granny Smith will also do the trick. The Thai basil is optional, but I recommend just a hint of it, as it does make a difference. I sincerely hope you enjoy this. ;o) —AntoniaJames

What You'll Need
  • ½ of a medium napa cabbage, finely sliced
  • Pinch of salt
  • ¼ cup finely sliced green shiso leaves
  • 1-2 teaspoons chopped Thai basil (optional)
  • 1 large tart apple (I used a Granny Smith), cut into medium julienne (without peeling)
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons organic mayonnaise (regular or vegan), or more to taste
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. In a large bowl, toss the cabbage with a pinch of salt.
  2. In a small bowl, toss the julienned apple with the vinegar.
  3. Reserving the vinegar, add the apple pieces to the bowl with the cabbage.
  4. Add the shiso, and Thai basil, if using, and toss well.
  5. Stir the sugar into the vinegar. Then, whisk the mayonnaise into the vinegar; pour over the salad. Toss well to combine. When you think you'’re done, keep going for another 10 or 12 strokes. It may not look like much dressing, but you really don'’t need a whole lot.
  6. Let it sit for at least an hour; then, toss the slaw well. Check for salt and pepper and correct, if necessary.
  7. Toss again before serving.
  8. I hope you try this, and like it. Yours affectionately, AntoniaJames ;o)

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • NakedBeet
  • lorigoldsby
  • Midge
  • TheWimpyVegetarian
  • fiveandspice

Recipe by: AntoniaJames

See problem, solve problem. Ask questions; question answers. Disrupt, with kindness, courtesy and respect. ;o)

18 Reviews

NakedBeet April 23, 2013
Antonia, do you know if you can keep shiso growing in a little pot inside?
AntoniaJames April 23, 2013
Actually, I don't know. I live in a place where just about everything grows outside in pots near the house year round, so I've never tried it inside. I can buy it easily when in season here, and I don't use much of it, so I just buy it. That sounds like an excellent question for the Hotline! ;o)
lorigoldsby July 4, 2011
AJ this sounds fantastic! I envy asian farmer's market!
Midge June 30, 2011
This sounds so refreshing. Must find some shiso!
TheWimpyVegetarian June 29, 2011
Shiso is inspired here! Wonderful idea!
AntoniaJames June 29, 2011
Thank you so much, ChezSuzanne! I'm glad you think so. ;o)
fiveandspice June 29, 2011
I have yet to use shiso, but I think I really need to go on the hunt for some and give it a try. Tastes almost of cinnamon, wow! This looks so great for these increasingly hot summer nights!
AntoniaJames June 29, 2011
Thanks, FandS. It was really hot here last week when I made this and yes, it was so refreshing, and ridiculously easy to make. The shiso is sort of like cinnamon, the way Thai basil is sort of like anise . . . . . it's evocative, and much more subtle, but a wonderful crossover flavor of herb + spice. Definitely go for the green kind. The flavor of the purple seems too medicinal for this purpose. ;o)
AntoniaJames June 28, 2011
Thanks, Linzarella! Have you tried the Bacon and Shiso Fried Rice posted by HumbleBean least year? It's outstanding. If you don't eat bacon, sprinkle some toasted sesame seeds, gomasio or furikake instead. Here's the link: I'll be posting another shiso recipe later this week, if I can source a key ingredient without too much difficulty. ;o)
linzarella June 28, 2011
Thanks for the tip, I have not tried that fried rice recipe but I certainly will now. I do eat bacon, but can I still add furikake? When I was a kid I loved it so much I would pour it into my hands and eat it straight. I swear I don't do that anymore.

And speaking of sesame-based toppings, I've been loving your version of dukkah. I made it in my mortar and pestle, and at first I couldn't get it ground up quite enough, but then I got the brilliant idea to put it into one of these:

Now it lives on my table next to the salt and pepper and gets used almost as frequently.
AntoniaJames June 28, 2011
Linzarella, yes, of course you can put furikake on as well as bacon! I can totally understand the eating it out of your hand, by the way. I made Okonomiyaki (finalist this week) last night using bean sprouts and napa cabbage, and just "happened" to have some excellent Piedmont Grocery bacon on hand, as I'm constitutionally incapable of cooking up less than 1/2 a pound at a time, "just in case," regardless of how much I actually need at the time. I threw some of that in, too. Hey, you're making eggs, so why not add some bacon?! So glad you like the dukkah. And thank you, thank you, thank you for the link to the sesame seed grinder!! What an excellent excuse for a trip to Japantown in SF, if I can't find one in Oakland Chinatown or one of the Asian supermarkets nearby. ;o)
linzarella June 28, 2011
I actually got mine at Soku Hardware in Japantown for about $5. That place rocks my world.
AntoniaJames June 28, 2011
Wow, what a useful bit of information! I'm definitely overdue for a field trip to SF (other than to the ballpark or to meetings in the financial district). Perfect! Thank you so much. ;o)
linzarella June 28, 2011
I love shiso so much but never really knew how to use it besides as a wrapper for raw fish. Excited to try this!
healthierkitchen June 28, 2011
Sounds really interesting and delicious! I'm growing both Thai basil and shiso so I will save thus for when the shiso grows a bit
AntoniaJames June 28, 2011
Thanks, HK! Now those are two great herbs to have on hand. I really like the green shiso a lot. I haven't been able to find a plant anywhere, as the purple shiso seems so much more hardy and therefore seems to be preferred for growing, so I'll be growing it from seed. Is yours green? Who is the supplier of the seeds? The green shiso has a much more delicate flavor, which I prefer. Thanks so much. ;o)
gingerroot June 27, 2011
Yum! I love shiso and can almost taste this with a tart apple. I will definitely be trying this soon.
AntoniaJames June 28, 2011
Thank you, gingerroot. I hope you do try it! We gobbled up in one sitting the batch I made the other night. I've been thinking about making another batch, ever since. ;o)