Cabbage craze

Cooking with Cathie

Cathie CampbellMarch 7, 2012 

Cabbage is one of those foods that people seem to either love or hate. I haven't met many people who are indifferent about it. If you really enjoy a meal that includes cabbage, I hope you find something here you'd like to try.

Cabbage is so versatile, as you can prepare it as an appetizer, salad (coleslaw is the most popular), soup, main dish or side dish, or even preserved, as in sauerkraut. I was trying to think of a dessert made with cabbage, but nothing comes to mind and I am almost afraid to look it up! Oh, and somewhere I actually saw a can of cabbage juice, but I don't think I will get into cabbage as a beverage, if you don't mind!

Well, on with the recipes.


Boiled cabbage

Now, an experienced cook may scoff at the idea of a recipe for boiled cabbage, but if you've never done it before, it can help to have some basic instructions. Many times cabbage ends up being way overcooked.

  • small to medium head cabbage, rinsed and cut into 6 wedges
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • to 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Add about 1/2 inch of water to a large skillet or Dutch oven; bring to a boil. Add cabbage wedges and salt; simmer, covered, for 8 to 10 minutes. Turn cabbage carefully and simmer about 8 minutes longer, or until boiled cabbage is tender.
  2. Pour off water and return to low heat until moisture has evaporated. Add melted butter; coat boiled cabbage thoroughly.
  3. Sprinkle boiled cabbage with salt and pepper, season to taste. Makes 6 servings.

Ribollita

Ribollita means reboiled or twice cooked in Italian. While this recipe doesn't have cabbage as the main feature, it does call for it along wish Swiss chard and kale, and when they are cooked together, it makes for one great soup! Start this recipe the day before you plan to serve it.

  • cups dry cannellini beans
  • cups water
  • (32-ounce size) cartons chicken broth
  • cloves garlic, minced
  • sage leaves
  • bay leaves
  • teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • onions, diced
  • carrots, peeled and sliced
  • large stalks celery, chopped
  • potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1/2 cups cabbage, coarsely chopped
  • bunch Swiss chard, trimmed and chopped
  • bunch kale, trimmed and chopped
  • (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • (1/2 -inch-thick) slices French bread, lightly toasted
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cups grated Parmesan cheese, for topping
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (in addition to the first 1/2 cup called for)
  1. Sort and rinse the beans before placing them in a large pot with the water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook 5 minutes. Turn off heat, cover, and let stand 1 1/2 hours. Drain.
  2. Place the beans, chicken broth, garlic, sage leaves, bay leaves and salt in a large pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer until beans are tender, about 2 hours. Cool. Remove 1 cup of beans. Discard the bay leaves and sage leaves. Blend the remaining bean mixture with a hand mixer, blender or food processor until smooth. Set aside.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions; cook and stir until transparent, about 10 minutes. Combine the carrots, celery, potatoes, cabbage, Swiss chard and kale with the onions. Stir in the tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and cook until greens have wilted, stirring at least once, about 20 minutes. Stir in the pureed bean mixture, and cook 40 minutes until the mixture thickens. Stir in the reserved beans. Adjust seasonings to taste. Add the toasted bread slices; cook until bread is soaked, about 10 minutes longer. Cool, and refrigerate overnight.
  4. Reheat the soup over low heat until heated through, about 20 minutes. Serve each serving garnished with 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese and a drizzle of olive oil. Makes 12 servings.

Cabbage rolls

What would a collection of cabbage recipes be without some old-fashioned rolls? You can use a slow cooker for this recipe.

  • leaves cabbage
  • cup cooked white rice
  • egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup minced onion
  • pound extra-lean ground beef
  • 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • tablespoon brown sugar
  • tablespoon lemon juice
  • teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Boil cabbage leaves 2 minutes; drain.
  2. In large mixing bowl, combine 1 cup cooked rice, egg, milk, onion, ground beef, salt and pepper. Place about 1/4 cup of meat mixture in center of each cabbage leaf, and roll up, tucking in ends. Place rolls in slow cooker.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together tomato sauce, brown sugar, lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce. Pour over cabbage rolls. Cover and cook on Low 8 to 9 hours. Makes 6 servings of 2 rolls each.

Kraut brot (cabbage bread)

This recipe saves time by using a hot roll mix.

  • pound lean ground meat
  • Small amount cooking oil
  • large white onion
  • medium to large head cabbage, thinly sliced
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup water
  • packages dinner roll mix
  1. Prepare the roll mix according to instructions on package and allow to rise once.
  2. Meanwhile in large cooking pot or pan, brown the meat in some cooking oil. Add onion and cabbage, salt and pepper. Add water, cover pot and simmer mixture until cabbage is thoroughly cooked (about 20 minutes). Remove from heat.
  3. Preheat oven to 400. When dough has risen once, roll it out into 4-inch squares (or whatever size you prefer). Place 3 tablespoons of the cabbage mixture in the center of the dough square. Fold the four corners toward the middle and pinch the seams to seal.
  4. Place on a cookie sheet folded side down and gently form each dough square into a bun. Cover with a tea towel and let rise a second time. Bake in preheated oven for 10 to 20 minutes. Serve warm or reheat later.

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