Friday, June 25, 2010

From My Kitchen: Vinegar Coleslaw

I love coleslaw, but I am not a fan of most creamy mayo-based slaws. I much prefer what I knew growing up as vinegar or sweet-and-sour coleslaw, but what many people (who don't live in the Great Frozen North) call North Carolina-style coleslaw. It's made with vinegar and sugar, and no mayo or Miracle Whip in sight.

I've tried many a coleslaw recipe over the years, and this in the one I keep coming back to again. I started with a recipe from Jan Karon's Mitford Cookbook. I've made a few small changes to suit our tastes. This makes a crisp, deliciously tangy coleslaw. It's also safer for your barbecue or picnic, since there's no mayo to go bad in the heat.

You can substitute bagged coleslaw mix for the cabbage and carrots, but you might still try the tip to salt the cabbage and let it sit to drain out the excess water. It really does make very crisp cabbage and ever better coleslaw. Though sometimes I just don't have time for that step, and the slaw is still delicious.

And, like all good coleslaw recipes, this one needs a little time for all the flavors to come together. I've served it sooner than the the suggested two hours after mixing, but it's more flavorful if you give it some time. I often put mine together while I'm making lunch so I've got plenty of time to drain the cabbage and let the final mixture hang out before serving.

Here's the recipe:

Vinegar Coleslaw
2-3 C. grated cabbage
1 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
1/2 C. grated carrots
1/2 large sweet onion, sliced into thin rings
1/2 C. vegetable oil
1/2 C. white vinegar
1 clove garlic, diced or pressed through a garlic press
1/2 C. sugar
Dash cayenne pepper
Freshly ground black pepper

Combine cabbage and salt in a colander. Cover with plastic wrap and place a heavy plate on top of the cabbage. (Make sure your plate rests on the cabbage, not the colander, to help press out the excess water.) Set the colander over a large bowl and place in the fridge for 1-4 hours, or even overnight, to allow the excess water to drain. This will produce very crisp cabbage.

Remove cabbage from fridge, and pat to dry with paper towels. Place in a large bowl and add carrots and onions.

In another bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, garlic, sugar and cayenne. Pour over the cabbage mixture, cover and let sit for at least two hours. Before serving, adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper.

Note: For a little variety you can replace half of the white vinegar with apple cider vinegar.

I'm serving this for our anniversary celebration tonight with barbecued pork ribs and fresh sweet corn. That ought to bring Jeff running home for supper, don't you think?


© Trippin' Mama 2010

1 comment:

susie said...

Yum, sounds great!! And happy anniversary!