A star of the winter vegetables is the cabbage. It's versatile as a coleslaw (from the Dutch koolsla -- cabbage salad), boiled, braised, preserved as sauerkraut or used as a wrap in cabbage rolls.
I have always liked red cabbage as an accompaniment to pork or beef, not only for the wonderful colour it gives to the plate, but also for the complexity of flavour. The recipe below is my adaptation of my Norwegian grandfather's recipe and uses caraway seeds and cloves as well as pickled lemons, if you choose to use them. Pickled lemons are typical in North African and Moroccan cuisine and can be found at most Asian or speciality food stores. Don't fret if you can't find them, apples work just fine.
If you are serving pork and red cabbage, be sure to pair it with a German style pilsner.
Red Cabbage (4 servings)
30 ml (2 tbsp) butter
1 1/4 l (5 cups) finely shredded red cabbage
1 shallot, finely sliced
250 ml (1 cup) sliced green apples or 15 ml (1 tbsp) preserved lemons or limes, diced
75 ml (1/3 cup) apple cider vinegar
45 ml (3 tbsp) water
60 ml (1/4 cup) white sugar
1 ml (1/4 tsp) salt
1 ml (1/4 tsp) freshly ground black pepper
1 ml (1/4 tsp) ground cloves
1 ml (1/4 tsp) caraway seeds
1. Melt butter in sauce pan and gently sauté shallots.
2. Stir in the cabbage, apples OR preserved lemons and sugar.
3. Add the vinegar and water and season with salt, pepper, caraway and cloves.
4. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until the cabbage is tender, approx 20 min.
5. Finish with a dot of butter before serving, it pulls together all the flavours.