A couple of weeks ago, I had the amazing opportunity to get away and leave my family behind and go on a little tour of wine country with some old, close friends. The trip was a fabulous getaway and one that I highly recommend moms do - get away, even for a short weekend and just leave it all behind. Of course leaving wasn't easy but Son and Daughters did remarkably well and upon my return were the perfect angels I thought I had lost. It seems that they also needed a break from stressed out mommy, yelling mommy, critical mommy, and mommy who is so tired she isn't rational. I got to giggle myself silly with girlfriends, ENJOY my food (instead of wondering who was going to ask me to get up from the table to get something) and think about what new things I'd like to try at home.
The girlfriends and I had planned the trip for a while, and one target restaurant on my list was Mustards Grill, located in Yountville. I've been a fan of this restaurant from afar, and the chef/owner Cindy Pawlcyn is one of the first great female chefs of Napa Valley. The food is as they describe it, "truck stop" but it really isn't even close to that. It is comfortable, homemade, refined and almost always with something of a twist. We ordered numerous delicious things, of note the Mongolian Pork Chop and Calamari with Curried Slaw. I sat eating the curried slaw, trying to pick it apart, figuring out what was in it, and was amazed at how great it tasted along side the calamari. It was a small twist, but totally changed my view about coleslaw and I came home determined to try it.
I made it on two different occasions, with two different dressings, and in the end, preferred the dressing that I made the second time, which has the addition of a little bit of mayonnaise. I served it with some panko breaded chicken tenders, and it was the most delicious side to the rather pedestrian chicken. The slaw itself elevated my rather bland chicken and the combination was special. It would taste great as a side to any grilled meats as well, but for some reason, the curry against fried breading is amazing.
One final note about our restaurant experience. The icing on the cake was sitting at our table having friend RT say, "Don't look, but I think that's Robin Williams in the corner." Immediately FB and I whipped our heads around to see if she was correct and sat there with our mouths agape for a few moments while RT frantically hissed at us to turn back around. Robin Wiliams it was, with small intimate group of 6. Later I asked our very cool waitress what he ate, and she related to us his choices: Caesar salad, Calf livers and then the Lemon Meringue Tart. (We also decided to have the same dessert - delectable!) I'm not a big "star gazer" but this was a very cool one, sharing a delicious restaurant experience with him. Make this curried slaw, but no guarantees on Robin Willliams joining you in your dining room.
1/2 head of green cabbage, thinly sliced
1 carrot, peeled and julienne or grated
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup cilantro, roughly chopped
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/3 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
2 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon black pepper
In a large bowl, toss together cabbage, carrot, red onion and cilantro.
In a smaller bowl, whisk together curry powder, vinegar, salt and pepper until salt is dissolved. Whisk in mayonnaise and oil. Continue whisking until well combined.
Before serving, drizzle the curry dressing all over the cabbage mixture. Toss well until everything is well coated. Enjoy!