Friday, July 8, 2011

Cabbage Part 2

After the cabbage rolls (see last post), today I had the partly-cooked inner portion of my gorgeous giant green cabbage to work with, plus the fresh small red potatoes from the produce place. Vegans will have to think "veggie stock" when reading this recipe.  We loved it!


1 chopped onion
2 chopped stalks celery
1 large clove garlic, minced or mashed
1 small cabbage (or the inside of a giant one left over after making cabbage rolls), raw or blanched, roughly chopped
4 oz chopped mushrooms (optional)
4-8 plum-sized new potatoes, chopped bite-size
2 turnips, chopped (optional)
2 quarts quality stock (I used defatted chicken and turkey, but veggie stock is fine!)
1 teaspoon fennel seeds, lightly crushed
garlic powder and dehydrated onion flakes, if desired, and to taste
black pepper to taste
1-3 cups packed chopped or torn kale leaves
salt if you must

Dry- or water- or stock-saute the onion and celery until softened a bit, then add the garlic and cook a bit more, then dump in the cabbage, optional mushrooms, potatoes, and optional turnips as you get them chopped, topping off with the stock and enough water to cover all the veggies in the pot.  (Mine was up to the tippy-top of a 6.5-quart pot.) Add the fennel and some pepper and garlic powder and dried onion if desired, bring to a boil, and simmer for about 20 - 50 minutes, until the potatoes are tender, adding the kale near the end of cooking time, depending on how wilted or fully-cooked you like it, and correct seasoning.

Verdict: Excellent. It helps that I started with an excellent stock, and I confess that it had some salt in it, but I usually cook with no additional salt, and my tastes have acclimated to it--it happens!  The family loved this, too, and the cold leftovers smell great this morning.

I added turnips only because I had two completely dried-out ones in my onion bowl and wondered if I could rehydrate them -- worked great!  I fished them out of the pot near the end of cooking and snipped them up (still a bit tough) and added them back into the pot. Turnip greens could easily be substituted for the kale, and carrots would be another nice addition, but I wanted to have the green color more prominent.

I served this with a gorgeous fruit salad of watermelon chunks, black raspberries, blueberries, and chopped mango with a little squeeze of lime. Lovely.

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I'd love to know what you think of these or if you have suggestions for improvements!