Seasonal Ingredient of the Week: Savoy Cabbage
As far as British cuisine goes, cabbage hasn't always been shown in its best light. Rather than exciting, innovative and 'the highlight of the meal', we've generally instead gone for limp, lifeless and lacking flavour. All is not lost though - pretty much everywhere else in the world, they know how to handle a cabbage, and luckily we now take note. From slow cooked cabbage stew and braised stuffed cabbage, to shredded slaw and our fave fermented sauerkraut, cabbage is finally showing its best side.
Savoy cabbage boasts beautiful, crinkled leaves and a mild, earthy flavour. They're also more tender than other varieties, even when raw. For the best, choose dark green cabbages that have firm, crisp leaves and feel solid and heavy - their dark colour is also a great indicator of the high levels of antioxidants packed within, a must-have during their winter seasonality!
- One of our favourite ways to cook cabbage is braising it slowly with complementary herbs and spices. Simply remove the core and shred thinly, then saute in a pan over a low heat with coconut oil, garlic, shallots and seasoning for 5 minutes. Add chicken (or veg) broth and simmer until almost evaporated then cover and leave for 30 minutes. Stir in cinnamon, stare anise before serving.
- Shredded cabbage is also a great addition to stir fries and lends itself particularly well to asian flavours. Stir fry finely shredded cabbage with garlic, ginger, tamari and a little sesame oil - delicious served with chicken or salmon.
- A popular greek dish is also Lahanodolmathes (stuffed cabbage rolls). Although quite fiddly to make, the end result is well worth it! The traditional stuffing is minced meat, but it works just as well with a mix of rice and chestnuts or kidney beans for a vegan option.
- We also love using lightly steamed cabbage leaves as a bun for burger patties - they're big enough and firm enough to wrap all the way around for a spillage free option!
- Raw cabbage is also the perfect addition to crunchy salads - we use it in two of our lunch boxes! Try a slaw of shredded cabbage (use either a food processor or mandolin slice), carrot and apple with a miso dressing for a delicious lunch.