Market Stars #6 - Cabbages
After the unabashed gorgeousness of blood oranges last week, I’m headed to explore a less beautiful star of the season: the cabbage. People say it's not the prettiest of produce and we associate it with the less appetising chapters of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but it really shouldn’t be overlooked.
It’s cheap, versatile, and can soak up flavour or give structure to so many dishes. Last week I trundled home with a January King, which is not dissimilar to a Savoy cabbage, its hardy leaves gradating in colour from a dark forest green to a sweet pale yellow, and the classic white cabbage, which I’d like to emphasise is not just for slaws and roasts. (Boiled white cabbage gets a tough rap, but I’m actually a huge fan of slightly-too-soft cabbage as a vehicle for gravy.)
They stay good in the fridge for ages, and you can just peel off any tired-looking outer leaves. So add these to your repertoire: toss them into soups, roast them in quarters or add them to your dumplings.
Roast January King with Black Beans, Romesco, Pan Grattato and Caper Oil
As a fourth dish, I also peeled off whole leaves of the white cabbage, blanched them and stuffed them with lamb mince (sauteed with cinnamon, cumin, turmeric and ginger, chopped cabbage, shallots and garlic, then simmered down in stock with a bit of basmati rice). Once stuffed, I baked the cabbage parcels in a tomato sauce with some feta and dried mint scattered over the dish. And then, of course, failed to take a picture.
Let me know what you think in the comments.