03 November 2011

Braised Red Cabbage with Apples

I've begun a new sewing project so my time today was spent on my hands and knees, laying out four inch quilt squares ... pushing Penny, the inquisitive kitty and Mimi, the naughty Corgi away from the quilt lay-out and talking them to calm lumps of fur beside me on the floor while I figured out the best color scheme. It's a miracle that they behaved so well  AND that I managed to get the rows of quilt squares laid out and then picked up and arranged in a small piles that are ready to sewn together tomorrow ... much easier than keeping them away from that Challah dough last week!

 Regardless ... I needed an easy dinner strategy after all that 'up-and-down', place and replace tedium, check and double check to make sure pattern is correctly laid out ...

When I made this vegetable side, all I could think of was Ralphie eating red cabbage for the umpteenth time in 'A Christmas Story' ... but I am here to tell you that this side is worth a try! We had ours with pork medallions that I flash fried in a slather of garlic, kosher salt, rosemary, black pepper, and olive oil. I put the pork on a warm platter and made a little sauce with the pan leavings ... white wine, chicken broth and cornstarch. The cabbage and apples were happily 'blub-blub' bubbling their way to sweet/sour perfection. while some potato wedges were crisping up in the oven. It was a good dinner ... a fall dinner ... a dinner that you can throw together quickly while you're puttering at other things.

Here's the cabbage and apple recipe ...

Stewed Red Cabbage with Apples


small head of red cabbage - thinly sliced - 8 cups finished cabbage/about 1½ lbs. cabbage
1 tbsp. olive oil
3 tbsp. butter
1 large shallot, small dice
3 sprigs fresh thyme (or ¾ tsp. dried thyme flakes)
1 large bay leaf
12 peppercorns or 12 juniper berries
2 large red cooking apples, peeled, cored and coarsely chopped - I used Macouns
2/3 c. apple/cranberry juice OR apple cider
2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tbsp. brown sugar
2 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped

Making the Dish:

1. Place the oil and butter in a heavy pot and place over medium heat.

2. When the butter has melted and is bubbling, add the shallots, thyme, and bay leaf and toss about until the shallots are translucent - about three to four minutes.

3.  Add the cabbage and toss to coat with the oils and juices and herbs. Cook for about five minutes until the cabbage is wilting - tossing about every minute or so.

4. Add the juice/cider, vinegar, apples, and sugar and toss to incorporate.

5. Make a small sachet of the peppercorns from a square of cheesecloth or a fabric teabag and add the peppecorns, stirring them down into the mix.

6. Lower the heat, cover the pan, place it on a heat diffuser and simmer it for about an hour, stirring occasionally to bring the lower contents to the surface and the upper contents down into the mix.

7. When you plate the dish, pull the peppercorn affair out of the cabbage, try to spot the bay leaf and thyme sprigs and pull them out too. Sprinkle the fresh parsley over top for color and serve steaming hot ... the sweet and sour vapors are perfect!


  1. I have physically printed this recipe out and it's in my Christmas Day lunch list... you are a food demon!... I love this recipe x... oh and I like your quilt too xx

  2. Love red cabbage and apples; haven't made it in quite a while; thank you for the reminder. Your meal sounded really good. Good luck with your quilting; something I have never learned.

  3. Serving red cabbage usually makes everyone happy. It always prettier than green cabbage and is usually served a little sweeter. This recipe is awesome. A few sausages to go a long for my boys and I'll be all set. My sister quilts and I know how time consuming and precise you have to be.

  4. Firstly I'm so impressed you're making your own quilt - I love these gorgeous bed covers. Secondly you've just made my favourite veg dish ever.

  5. Dom - great minds think alike!!!! It's on my Christmas Dinner Menu too.

    Thanks a million for this fantastic recipe - I just love new veggie ideas.

  6. I'm glad this is making a comeback, it was on our Thanksgiving and Christmas tables every year when I was growing up. I have to force it on my family these days...Your photo is great, it's worth making this just to experience that color!

  7. @ Sue, Dom & Brownie Girl - Funny, but I never think of this as a Thanksgiving or Christmas side. For me, it's always a chilly night stick to your ribs meal side ... usually about the time snowy boots or wet sports gear are piled by the back door.

  8. Love how vibrant this dish is...I made something similar this week with some red cabbage left from my CSA Box and apples from the farmer's market.

  9. This is what we have with our Christmas turkey every year! It is really delicious and keeps brilliantly in the fridge too. Christmas wouldn't be the same without it!
    I just wanted to say thank you for your concern re the recent earthquake in Van. Fortunately Van is miles away in eastern Turkey but of course for those poor souls, it's tragic.

  10. it looks really good, it is a strange combination but sounds delicious


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