Braised Red Cabbage
sufficient for 8 – 10 people – rewarms well
1 red cabbage – very thick veins removed and finely shredded
250g cold butter – cubed 2 medium purple onions – peeled and finely chopped
5g sea salt
2 cloves of garlic optional ¬ macerate with the salt
2g caraway seeds
2 fresh bay leaves
100g white wine vinegar
white pepper to taste
Select a large heavy based pan or wok, add the butter and place it on medium heat. When the butter starts to foam, add the cabbage in batches, adding more as it cooks and becomes less in volume. Add the onion, salt/garlic, sugar, caraway seeds and bay leaves and continue sautéing for another five minutes or until the onion is softened. Turn the heat up, add the vinegar, stir over, then add the remaining butter, cooking until the sauce is emulsified.
Do not overcook the cabbage, and if you’re making a roast and don’t want to be doing anything at the last minute, cook the cabbage in advance, making sure to slightly undercook it and re-warm it either on top of the stove of easier still in the microwave where you will not have to watch if it burns or not.
This recipe is excellent with any type of cabbage, though substituting the butter for thinly sliced speck and rendering the lard from it at low heat, removing the crisp bits and continuing as above is a beautiful flavour change. Sometimes the crisp speck is put into the dumplings and other times returned to the cabbage just before serving so that it remains a little crunchy.