Thursday, December 10, 2009

Veggie Might: Red Cabbage with Apples

Penned by the effervescent Leigh, Veggie Might is a weekly Thursday column about the wide world of Vegetarianism.

Does anyone else have those friends who bring out your inner junk-food junkie? For me, it's my friend C. She's a tall, slender woman who barely eats. Food is just not on her radar.

C doesn't cook; she can eat an apple and call it lunch. She will eat one serving of potato chips and put the bag away. It's unnatural. And unfortunately, I don't share her resistance to wolfing down the whole bag.

So to counter a weekend spent with C (and cinnamon rolls, guacamole chips, popovers, and White Castle), I made Mark Bittman's delicious and deliciously simple Red Cabbage with Apples. I wish I'd taken a photo of the cabbage as I cut it. If you make this, take a minute to marvel at the magenta and white brain-like twists and turns. Gorgeous.

True to form, I made a few tweaks. I could barely taste the clove, so I upped the recommended amount. I thought I could peel the apples while the cabbage cooked, but I was wrong. You'll need to stir the cabbage frequently to avoid scorching and add a bit of water or stock if necessary. The pink brains need your attention, and they're worth it.

This dish is bright and tangy with a hint of sweet. Curling up with an overproduced sci-fi miniseries and a bowl of red cabbage and apples will cleanse any lingering junk-food guilt that may linger from a weekend food frenzy or holiday sweets-fest. And it tastes so good, you may forget you're being healthy.

(Incredible red cabbage photo from Flickr member jasonwebber.)


If you like this recipe, you might also dig:

Red Cabbage with Apples
From How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman
Yields 12 1/2-cup servings

1 tbsp canola oil (or any neutral oil)
1 head red cabbage (about 2 lbs), cored and shredded
3 medium - large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
4 - 5 cloves
1/2 cup veggie stock
salt and pepper to taste

1) Core and shred the cabbage. Peel, core, and chop the apples into chunks.

2) In a large sauce pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the cabbage and cloves, and cook for 20 minutes or until soft. Stir often and be careful of scorching.

3) Add veggie stock and apples. Stirring frequently, cook for another 10 to 15 minutes or until apples are soft (or the texture you like).

4) Fish out cloves (if you can find them) and serve alongside a hearty main dish.

5) Dig in; and if you end up eating it all, it's okay. It's sooo good for you.

Approximate Calories, Fat, Fiber, and Price per Serving
66.1 calories, 2.67g fat, 2.75g fiber, $0.35

1 tbsp canola oil: 120 calories, 14g fat, 0g fiber, $0.08
1 head red cabbage: 352 calories, 2g fat, 24g fiber, $2.00
3 medium Granny Smith apples: 312 calories, 0g fat, 9g fiber, $2.00
4 - 5 whole cloves: negligible calories, fat, and fiber, $.02
1/2 cup veggie stock: 10 calories, 0g fat, $.10
salt and pepper to taste: negligible calories, fat, and fiber, $.04
Totals: 794 calories, 32g fat, 33g fiber, $4.24
Per serving (totals/12): 66.1 calories, 2.67g fat, 2.75g fiber, $0.35

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The Local Cook said...

What a timely recipe! I'll be getting lots of cabbage and apples in my CSA winter share next week. Thanks so much! Looks yummy!


What's also good is cutting up cabbage in large chunks; cutting up four apples in half, and after searing a 2# pork loin (seasoned with ginger; celery salt, pepper, cloves and cinnamon), is putting all of this in a roasting pan - cut up two red onions in huge chunks, and place on the top before you pop it into the pan to roast.

Then every 15 minutes, baste the entire thing with applesauce that's been mixed into melted butter; balsamic vinegar, and sweet vermouth (about 2 cups applesauce; 1/2 cup butter - 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar, and 1/2 cup sweet vermouth.

Scoup out larger portions of the vegetables; a small portion of loin (although pork loin is low in fat to start with) and serve with red beets that you've roasted previously in the oven - add the beets into the roasting pan during the last 15 minutes to re-heat.

Another delicious and easy cabbage recipe is cabbage soup; it's pretty much onion, cabbage, tomatoes with chicken stock so there are very few calories. If you want to add any left-over meat-loaf that you crumble up and put into the soup, that adds some bulk and of course flavor and calories, but overall it's not expensive or high in calories in any way.

Frankly, I just love to steam my cabbage; lightly season it - put some whipped butter on top of the pile I put on my plate - lots of coarse-ground pepper, and eat it with a plate of beets - again, you can afford the butter, because they're virtually no calories in the cabbage or beets.

Nicole M., MS, RD, LD said...

That looks wonderful and very unique!

Kathi in NJ said...

Yummy! It's wickedly cold here in the Northeast today, and this sounds perfect!

For anybody that might be interested, is doing a fantastic donation campaign that perfectly fits the mantra here: it's cheap, healthy, and (doing) good!

Shana said...

Oh, sweetie, I'm totally making this one.

Leigh said...

Thanks y'all. I had no idea cabbage would be so well received. I'm determined to make my own sauerkraut very soon. Anyone have suggestions on how-to?

Kathy, thanks for the link. I heart cakewrecks even more now!

Leigh said...

Sorry, Kathi! My fingers got ahead of my brain.

SkinnyCook said...

That sounds delicious. Perfect for a cold NY winter's night. My go-to comfort bowl (and very healthful) is roasted butternut squash (topped with baby spinach and a few blue cheese crumbles!) You can check out the recipe here: