Saturday, December 19, 2015

Grandma's Coleslaw

In conversation with my friend M recently she said to me "Coleslaw? Who makes coleslaw for Thanksgiving?" As though it were an abomination. As though she had just opened her fridge and been blasted backwards by the overpowering smell of the cabbage within. I patiently explained to the poor bemused woman that no significant gathering of Bons, or Bon friends and neighbors, was complete without my mother-in-law's coleslaw. I'm sure all your ears are ringing from the praises being heaped on cabbage and other members of the cruciferous family these days for their valuable work in keeping us all healthy and out of the cardiac ward. The secret lies in not just reading these articles, saying "Hmmm..." and making vague mental notes to eat some cabbage soon, but rather in hying thee to the kitchen and making some coleslaw today!

And then, of course, eating it.

Having explained the reason for coleslaw at the Thanksgiving table to my mystified friend she has now requested the recipe.  In the interests of keeping hearts healthy everywhere I am waiving my usual procrastination period and supplying her with the recipe immediately.  Here it is:

1 head of cabbage --- hard and solid, like a small bowling ball
1/4 of a medium onion
2 medium sized carrots
1 clove of garlic
salt and pepper

Shred the cabbage finely. I do this with a mandolin, but use whatever works for you. Before I got the mandolin I muddled through with a grater though there was probably a larger percentage of shredded finger in that cole slaw, but my children are all still alive.

Next, grate the onion and carrots and mix with the grated cabbage.

In a small bowl mix together about 3/4 cup of mayonnaise with 2 large Tbsp vinegar. Season to taste with salt and pepper and an (optional) squirt of Tabasco. Blend the dressing with the vegetables. The easiest way is to mix it with your (clean) hands. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours, or overnight, to blend the flavors.

As it turned out, I did not waive the procrastination period since I started this right after Thanksgiving and am only now, a week before Christmas, finishing it! But still in time for M to be daring and serve coleslaw with Christmas dinner.