Taunte Helen’s Coleslaw Declared ‘National Historic Site’


A coleslaw that Taunte Helen brought over from the old country in the 1920s and continues to serve at potlucks and family gatherings has been declared a ‘National Historic Site’ by the government of Canada.

“I’m very proud that my ever-lasting coleslaw is being honoured like this,” said Taunte Helen. “It’s survived almost nine decades and an arduous voyage at sea to get where it is today.”

Taunte Helen says she occasionally adds a bit of vinegar to keep it fresh, but otherwise it’s the very same batch that her mother made in Molotschna.

“I know the museum’s been itching to get their hands on this coleslaw,” said Taunte Helen. “But I’m not ready to donate it. It’s still serving me well. For now I’m going to keep hauling it out whenever I have company.”

The coleslaw is one of only a handful of nationally-recognized Mennonite historic sites in Canada and now sits of the list alongside the likes of Neubergthal and the Schneider Haus.

“When I’m finished with it, I’m hoping they’ll put up a cairn in front of my house,” said Taunte Helen. “Quite frankly, they wouldn’t even need to purchase a stone. This coleslaw’s as hard as a rock already!”

Taunte Helen also boasts a collection of dairy products in her refrigerator that are well past the expiry date.

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