From America's Test Kitchen Season 2: Fried Chicken and 'Fixens
Sweet-and-sour coleslaw pairs crisp cabbage with a simple dressing that is neither watery nor overly acidic. Or at least it should.
Many recipes recommend soaking the shredded cabbage in ice water or salting it and allowing it to wilt. We quickly discovered that in addition to becoming unpleasantly stiff, iced cabbage doesn’t bind with the dressing. Salted cabbage, however, loses much of its internal moisture and wilts nicely while still remaining pickle-crisp. Because this cabbage has less water in it, the dressing remains undiluted and the shreds absorb more flavor. This basic recipe is good as is but can also be dressed up with green pepper, celery, red onions, radishes, apples, or nuts.
Since rice wine vinegar tends to mellow, you may want to use cider vinegar if making the slaw a day ahead. The presence of the sugar in this recipe keeps you from having to rinse off salt from the cabbage, as is ordinarily the case.