Last fall, my goal was to make you fall in love with Brussels sprouts. I hope it worked! I know I've been chowing down on them ever since.
My goal this winter is to elevate the lowly cabbage to its rightful place of honour. I'm a firm believer that the poor cabbage gets a bad rap. Often boiled to death, it becomes a limp, wilted pile of muck. I'm not surprised that most people would be turned off by it in this state!
However with the right preparation cabbage can inspire awe in even the most jaded omnivore. Braised in a flavoursome broth, with a few herbs and perhaps some back bacon (for good measure!) it can be a thing of beauty - a mouth-watering treat well deserving of any holiday table.
This method of preparation is quick enough for a weeknight, and goes especially well with pork and lentils. Do I even need to mention that cabbage is a stellar source of glucosinolates and sulforaphanes? Of course! Those cancer fighting chemicals alone should entice you to dig into a big bowl of the leafy green vegetable. It's also a great source of fibre. Sometimes I find myself wondering: Is there anything cabbage can't do?
Recipe - Braised Cabbage
Adapted from Dietitians of Canada Cook Great Food
3 sliced back bacon, diced (optional)
1 small onion, sliced
1/4 cup finely diced carrot
4 cups sliced cabbage
1 bay leaf
a pinch of dried thymb
1/4 cup chicken broth
Salt and pepper
In a large skillet over low heat, cook bacon and onion for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. (Note. I often skin the bacon, because it's not something I generally have on hand. If so, add a splash of olive oil to the pan with the onions.)
Add the carrot; cover and cook for 1 minute. Stir in cabbage, bay leaf, thyme and chicken broth. Cook, covered over low heat for about 10 minutes or until tender-crisp, stirring occasionally. (Make sure not to over cook!) Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove bay leaf before serving.