This month we continue our look at vegetables and this month it is Cabbage.

I love white crispy Cabbage cooked as a vegetable with mash and gravy, but my husband just loves it raw. Of course everyone’s favourite cabbage recipe is Cole Slaw or Cold Slaw as my granddaughter calls it. There are several variations on the traditional recipe, so why not try making it with Red Cabbage for a change? Red Cabbage adds lovely colour and texture to any recipe and is very under-used. Why not try the Devil Red Cabbage recipe below? It uses apples which go very well with Cabbage and can be served hot or cold. The Chinese use a lot of Cabbage in their cooking and below is just one of many recipes using the stir fry method.
Buen Apetito

Cole Slaw

Large white cabbage
Small onion
2 large carrots
Salt and pepper
A dash of vinegar
Salad seasoning
Mayonnaise/Salad Cream

Slice cabbage into strips, chop onion into small cubes and grate carrot. Mixed all chopped vegetables together and add Mayo or Salad cream depending on taste. Add seasoning, salt and pepper and vinegar. Mix until all veg is covered. Will last for 4 to 5 days in fridge. To vary, try adding a hand full of sultanas or a chopped apple.

Stir Fried Cabbage With Garlic

½ Chinese cabbage
3 cloves garlic
Sea salt
Extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper

Remove and discard the outer leaves from the cabbage and cut the leaves into large pieces. Pound the garlic with a pestle and mortar adding a large pinch of salt until coarsely ground. Heat a wok until very hot, add a generous amount of olive oil and heat until almost smoking. Add the garlic to the wok, then immediately add the cabbage and stir-fry, moving the wok contents constantly to prevent the garlic from burning. Cook, adding extra oil as necessary, over high heat until the cabbage is warmed through but still crunchy. Transfer to a large serving platter and sprinkle generously with freshly ground black pepper.

Devil Red Cabbage

1 tbsp sunflower oil
1 onion, chopped
450g/1lb red cabbage, shredded
225g/8oz cooking apples, peeled, cored and diced
2.5cm/1″ piece fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
Pinch of ground cinnamon or allspice
150ml/¼pt vegetable stock
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion, red cabbage and apple and cook gently for 5 minutes. Add the ginger and cinnamon or allspice and the vegetable stock. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 15-20 minutes until most of the liquid has evaporated and the vegetables are tender. Season to taste and serve.

Stuffed Cabbage

1-2 large white cabbages
40g/1½oz lard
1 large onion, chopped
2 tbsp paprika
1.4kg/3lb 4oz pork mince
450g/1lb long grain rice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 x 400g/14oz can chopped tomatoes

Put the cabbages in a large pan, add enough freshly boiled water to cover and boil for 5-10 minutes, or until the leaves fall off the cabbage. Remove from the pan and cool slightly. Separate the leaves and set aside to drain and cool further. Melt the lard in a frying pan and add the chopped onion and fry until soft over a medium heat. Tip the softened onions into a bowl and stir in the paprika. Add the minced pork and the rice to the bowl, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and mix well.

Take a cabbage leaf and cut away a little of the tough stalk so that it is easy to roll. Add a spoonful of the mincemeat mixture to the stalk-end of the leaf, then roll the cabbage into a sausage shape, tucking in the ends as you go. Try to roll the leaf as firmly as possible, so that it doesn’t unroll during cooking. Repeat with the remaining cabbage leaves until you have used all the stuffing mixture. Shred any leftover cabbage and use some to line the bottom of a large pan – this prevents the stuffed cabbage leaves from burning on the bottom of the pan. Place the stuffed leaves in the pan as snugly as possible, with the join underneath, then cover with any remaining shredded cabbage. Add boiling water to cover the cabbage rolls, bring to the boil and then add the chopped tomatoes and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer gently for 1–1½ hours, covered, until the pork is cooked – to test, remove a stuffed leaf from the pan and pierce with a skewer. The juices will run clear when the pork is cooked. During cooking, check the liquid levels, adding more boiling water if needed to prevent the pan from boiling dry. Serve the stuffed cabbage drizzled with the juice from the pan, and soured cream and freshly sliced crusty bread on the side.

Cabbage Soup

¼ potato, peeled and finely chopped
300ml/10½fl oz vegetable stock
¼ Savoy cabbage, chopped
25g/1oz toasted peanuts, to garnish

Place the potato and stock into a saucepan over a high heat. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat to simmer for seven minutes. Add the cabbage and continue to simmer for six minutes, until the cabbage has cooked and the potatoes are soft. To serve, pour the soup into a bowl and finish with a sprinkling of peanuts (optional).