This is adapted from a recipe in Bon Appetit, offered up by a woman named Caroline Belk. It’s a nice light change from the typical mayo-based cole slaw and actually goes better with NC barbecue, which has a vinegar based sauce. Belk is a big name in Virginia/North Carolina, so she must be for real. Bill Neal (James’ source for all things southern cooking) has a recipe for Boiled Dressing that he uses to make slaw, but honestly, it sounded disgusting, involving stirring egg yolks and heavy cream into a vinegar mixture. I thought Ms. Belk’s caught the flavors of traditional NC cole slaw, with more modern ingredients. I did make some changes, per reviews and my own taste: less sugar than she had and subbed carrots for green pepper. The purple cabbage and carrots make it prettier I think. Serve this with barbecue or fried chicken!
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
4 tablespoons sugar
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 1/2 teaspoons dry mustard
½ teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon celery seeds
1 medium cabbage (about 1 1/4 pounds), thinly sliced (used red and white for color)
1 red onion, thinly sliced
2 carrots, grated
Combine vinegar, sugar, oil, mustard and celery seeds in non-aluminum medium saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves and dressing comes to boil. Remove from heat. Season with salt and pepper. Cool completely.
Combine cabbage, onion and carrots in large bowl. Add dressing; toss to coat. Cover; refrigerate until cold, tossing occasionally, at least 2 hours. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; keep refrigerated.)