F is for Food: SlawPosted on June 1, 2015
In Bob Garner’s Book of Barbecue, he says that “if you were led blindfolded into a barbecue restaurant, then had the blindfold removed at the table, you could easily tell 90 percent of the time whether you were in the east or the Piedmont by one glance at the coleslaw.” Like barbecue, coleslaw can be a dividing point among North Carolinians. White, mayonnaise-based slaw is served with eastern-style barbecue, to balance the fiery chopped pork. Lexington-style barbecue is typically served with a slaw that is red and tangy, to spice up the barbecue next to it on the plate. Recipes for both types are included in this article.
This recipe is from a fascinating book, Pig Pickin’ Carolina Style, which not only tells you how to make barbecue, but how to make your own barbecue cooker–complete with illustrations. It also has a standard eastern slaw recipe. It was published in 1980 in Lumberton, NC.
Pig Pickin’ Carolina Style
A Davco Promotions Publication
This book is written from the practical experiences of the author participating in “pig pickin’s.” There is no intention to endorse any commercial products or eating establishments in this book.
Slaw is a very popular side dish with barbecue and can be prepared with ease in minutes. A slaw recipe that is very popular is outlined below. Slaw recipes can be varied by adding extra ingredients, such as pickles, onions, mustard, etc.; by increasing or decreasing the necessary ingredients; and by the manner in which it is chopped or shredded to be served.
1 head of cabbage (firm) chopped or shredded
1 ½ Tablespoons mayonaise
½ Teaspoon mustard
1 ½ Tablespoons diced sweet pickles
2 Teaspoons sweet pickle vinegar
¼ Teaspoon black pepper
½ Teaspoon salt
½ Teaspoon sugar
Mix thoroughly and serve at room temperature or chilled.
from Holy Smoke: The Big Book of North Carolina Barbecue by John Shelton Reed and Dale Volberg Reed with William McKinney, published in 2008
Lexington Barbecue Slaw
1 medium head cabbage, chopped (you can use a food processor)
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
4 tablespoons ketchup
3 tablespoons sugar
Dash Texas Pete (a Tar Heel slaw deserves a Tar Heel hot sauce)
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon salt
Mix the dressing ingredients and toss with the cabbage. Like all slaws, this one is better if refrigerated several hours.
The Museum of Durham History and the North Carolina Collection at the Durham County Library are partnering to bring you food lore and recipes from the North Carolina Collection, just in time for the Durham A-Z: F is for Food exhibit, on display at the History Hub through July 27.
Originally published in Herald-Sun 05/31/2015