Salting certain vegetables and letting them sit for an hour or so helps to drain off excess moisture, so the finished dish is a lot less soggy. I already use this technique with cucumbers and zucchini, but only recently did I discover what a huge effect pre-salting has on one of my favorite vegetables: cabbage!
I was introduced to this technique in Mark Bittman's recipe for kimchi-style coleslaw. Bittman recommends tossing a head of shredded cabbage with about one tablespoon of salt and letting it sit in a colander for an hour or two. During that time, the cabbage seems to get soggy and wilted, but after all the moisture is squeezed out, it has a crisp bite that remains even hours after it's dressed. (It might even last days, but this coleslaw was so good, it wasn't around long enough for me to find out.)
I haven't tried this technique yet with a mayonnaise-based coleslaw dressing, but I imagine it would be just as tasty and crisp.
Are there any vegetables you like to salt and drain before using?
Related: Recipe: Classic Southern Coleslaw
(Image: Nealey Dozier)