Memorial Day is around the corner, & I’m sure a lot of us will be attending a picnic or two. Many times we are asked to bring a side or dessert, & likely one of these sides will be coleslaw. The origins of coleslaw can be traced back to the ancient Romans, who made a dish consisting of cabbage, eggs, vinegar, & spices. The word coleslaw comes from the Dutch word koolsla, meaning cabbage salad. The kool part is the Dutch word for cabbage & the sla part is a Dutch abbreviation of the word salade. When the Dutch settled into New York they brought their recipe for this chilled cabbage salad. Even though coleslaw has been know for quite some time in various parts of the world, It is now mostly known as an American dish.
There are many variations of the coleslaw recipe, with additions to the cabbage & dressing. The dressing can be either mayonnaise, cream, sour cream, buttermilk, blue cheese, or vinaigrette. The cabbage can be chopped, shredded, or hashed. Some of the different ingredients that are added are red cabbage, pepper, shredded carrots, onion, grated cheese, pineapple, & apple. In Italy they even add cooked ham. I also read when I researched this that there is a creation of “warm slaw” which was buttered & garnished with a hard boiled egg.
The recipe that I am sharing was given to me by Kristen Swengel Lewald. Back in the ‘80s when John & Kelly Adams owned The Tourist Inn, Kristen & my sister Suzanne Nace Jones worked there. Two of the most popular meals were The TI Burger & fish served with coleslaw. Kristen thought the coleslaw was really tasty, & she finally convinced the cook to share it with her. I have no idea if this is the same recipe that they use today, but I have actually made this recipe, & it is quite good. Hopefully some of you will try it too, & if you do let me know what you think!