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red cabbage

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Festive red cabbage

Guess what: red cabbage does not really need that red-wine-cook-for-hours treatment. I’ve only discovered it having grown about six handsome heads, rock hard, the size of a football (or even a football pitch, some) each, unblemished, healthy and begging to be stored until Christmas, to be served with that goose, or duck, or the three bird roast.

It goes so beautifully with each of the above but the secret is it will go just as well with a pork chop on a weeknight. Why? Because it takes all of just about five minutes to cook. No kidding.

True – you have to shred the brute. But red cabbages are compact and tight so if you’re a lucky owner of a food processor, a mandolin or a strong pair of a sous-chef’s hands*, you’ll not be taking an awfully long time with it.

Don’t get me wrong – I’ve cooked red cabbage slow and low before, with the obligatory red wine and spices, but since the generous crop this year I’ve had to look for quicker ways. This is dead easy. You can whip  - or stir – it up in no time at all while your goose, or indeed your pork chop if not Christmas, is resting.

*in my case

red cabbage

Servings: 4-6Time: half an hour, including shredding

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 small red cabbage
  • 2 small apples
  • a handful of raisins
  • 30g butter
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • a pinch of ground cloves
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp redcurrant jelly
  • 1 tbsp white balsamic or good white wine vinegar

Red cabbage


METHOD

1. Clean the cabbage and remove the outer leaves, if blemished. Quarter it and cut out the core. Shred it quite finely by hand or using a food processor with a shredding or slicing attachment. Peel and core the apples and dice them quite small.

Cabbage and apples

2. In a large skillet or a wok heat up the butter, add the diced apple, the raisins and the spices. Cook on medium heat for a minute.

3. Turn the heat up to high and add the cabbage.

Stir fried apples and red cabbage

4. Season generously with salt and pepper and stir fry, tossing it around well so the apple chunks and the raisins mix in. Add the redcurrant jelly and mix well.

5. Stir fry it for 3 or 4 minutes, taste for seasoning and for doneness – it should still have a bite to it but not be tough. Drizzle with the vinegar, serve immediately or transfer to an ovenproof dish to keep warm until ready. It is also rather fantastic re-heated, even on the next day.

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