Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Finally graduated!!! Plus home made Cole Slaw recipe

It took me about 10 years to finish my Bachelor of Laws degree; but I finally graduated last Friday!

Me and my mother after my final examination
I'm so relieved not having the obligation to spent most of my free time studying anymore!
For months now I can't stop thinking about all the things I've been wanting to do but didn't have the time; cleaning up our house; spent more time with my husband; go running three times a week instead of two and off course more time for cooking and blogging.  But now it's finally that far it doesn't feel like a big relief; it actually feels a bit uncomfortable.

I'm sure it's just a matter of time before I find a new balance,  but all this free time even got me thinking;
'is this the moment in life where women decide they are ready for motherhood???'
Believe me;  for this happily childfree crazy Dutch foodie that's a really extreme thought!
But I decided that still was not something that suited me and went back to celebrating my graduation by throwing a BBQ party for my close relatives.

We started with little Peche Melba cupcakes; again by a recipe from the cupcakes book from Rudolph van Veen. Then a few cucumber/smoked salmon & melon/prosciutto appetizers.
I kept what went on the BBQ simple by buying different kind of sausages and marinated a bunch of chicken wings. There was also lots of  bread with homemade herb butter (based on a recipe from the Dutch foodblog Uit Pauline's Keuken, with an extra sprig of tarragon and a pinch of dried Provencal herbs), tzatziki and a roasted red pepper with feta dip from Epicurious.
But most of the preparation time was spent to three home made salads which were a huge success!
Even my 11 month year old niece ate a bit of everything :-).

Peche Melba cupcakes, herb butter & pasta salad
For the potato salad I used this recipe from Jamie Oliver. A pasta salad was made at random by mixing some short pasta with pesto, dried tomatoes, fresh cherry tomatoes, chopped black olives, little pieces of mozzarella, a bit of rocket salad and toasted pine nuts with a dressing of olive oil & balsamic vinegar and finished with some coarsely grated Parmesan cheese.

But I was most proud of the big bowl of  Cole Slaw salad. It was based on a American cole slaw recipe from my little brothers former father in law which is an enthusiast BBQ fan with a lovely website in Dutch full of BBQ recipes. It's funny that although we call it American cole slaw the dish has Dutch roots ('koolsla' in Dutch means 'cabbage salad'). It fits perfectly with everything that comes from the barbecue and I love it with grilled chicken because it reminds me of Belize where it is a popular combination together with black beans.

Here's my recipe of how I made it last Sunday, for the Dutch version click here:

Graduation Cole Slaw

Ingredients for 1 bowl (enough for at least 4-6 people as a side dish) 
  • 500 grams of oxheart cabbage, finely sliced ( oxheart cabbage is used instead of white cabbage, which makes perfectly sense in summer time) 
  • 125 grams carrots, grated
  • 1/2 onion, medium, finely chopped
  • 2 red chillies, seeds removed, finely chopped
  • 50 grams raisins, soaked in water 
  • 1/2 cup (= 100 grams) mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

1. Make the dressing and set aside.

2. If necessary, chop the cabbage and grate the carrot.

3. Mix the onion and chili with the finely sliced ​​cabbage and grated carrot.

4. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and mix well.

You can easily make the salad a few hours in advance; keep it in the refrigerator and mix in the raisins just before you serve it.

I totally forgot to make pictures of all the food this day...
Fortunately my brother in law has a great camera and quickly made some pictures just after the buffet was opened; thanks Per!


  1. When you have trouble that you don't have the obligations from your study anymore, please be free to feel obligated making delicious cookies, cakes, snacks or salades like this for your co-workers. I'm sure that will give a huge satisfaction if not for you, than at least for your co-workers. ;)
    Just kidding! Congratulations with the graduation! You did a great job!

  2. Hmmmn... Not sure about the raisins in there. And have never heard of oxheart cabbage.  (∩_∩)ミ

    1. Oxheart cabbage is a smaller relative of the white cabbage, but with a conical shape. Unlike savoy or white cabbage Oxheart cabbage is a summer vegetable which makes it perfect for a summer salad.

      The raisins are a sweet touch but you can easily leave them out.


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