Red Cabbage and Apples
Winter arrived in Las Vegas this week. It was the end of summer less than a week ago – temps in the balmy eighties. Suddenly it was gusty, chilly, better pull-a-jacket-on-with-a sweater weather. That’s how it happens around here.
After nine years in Las Vegas I’ve learned the drill. It takes a long time to make the agonizingly slow descent from the scorching, oppressive, make-you-want-to-cry 110 degree heat in August, to the cooler but still summery October.
Yesterday I wanted hot cocoa. I wanted my coziest, ugliest chenille sweater and a good, engrossing book. Instead I had meetings with two mentoring clients and a prospective client.
Plus, our carpet was cleaned. So, at 7:00 am, Ernie and I had to move furniture. Almost everything had to be up off the floor. My leather office chairs were in the bathroom. The dining table was in the kitchen. The side tables were on top of our bed. The carpet looks great, though. We’re ready for the holidays. The Christmas tree will go up next weekend.
Today, I intend to tuck into a good book underneath a cuddly afghan.
This time of year we want hearty, rib-sticking foods that make us feel nurtured. Even here in Vegas But we don’t want to pack on pounds. Because after the holidays we’ll set New Years Resolutions to lose those same pounds. As a result my favorite mashed potato recipes (I’ve got some good ones) will have to wait.
So, I still want health, but not a salad. A great alternative? Red cabbage prepared in a distinctly German, slightly sweet and sour kind of way as a side dish. German food is one of those cuisines that don’t always get a lot of attention – which is surprising. So many people in America are descended from German roots. It’s part of my heritage. Though I must admit, I’m more French than I am German.
Yes, there’s a lot of beer and bratwurst in German food. If you’re a hothead and love a lot of heat in your dishes, German food might not be right for you. But sometimes we want something different.
This red cabbage side dish is tasty, healthy and hearty all at the same time. That’s a winner in my book. It’s also colorful on the plate and that’s a plus this time of year. Serve it with sausages as I’ve done or a nice cut of lightly breaded chicken or veal on the side. I bought some Chicken Apple Sausages and simply sauteed them in a pan to go with the cabbage. They went together well. Here’s the recipe:
- One half, medium head red cabbage
- One Granny Smith apple cut in thin slices with skin left intact
- 2-tablespoons, walnut oil
- 3-tablespoons brown sugar
- 2-tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1/4-teaspoon sea salt
- a generous pinch black pepper
- 1-teaspoon, Dijon mustard.
- 1/3-cup chopped walnuts, toasted
Using a sharp knife cut cabbage into thin shreds of 1/4-inch or less in width. In a large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid put one inch of water. Add the cabbage and cover with the lid. Turn to medium high heat until boiling and then turn down to medium-low heat. Once boiling cook about 20 minutes. The last five minutes add the apple slices to the pan and cover again. Drain cooked cabbage and apples in a colander in the kitchen sink.
While cabbage and apples are cooking together put a medium skillet on medium heat. Add oil to the pan and swirl to coat. While oil is getting hot combine brown sugar, vinegar, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Add mustard and mix with a fork or a small whisk to combine. Dijon mustard acts like an emulsifier and will bring together oil and vinegar. This is why it’s often used in vinaigrette dressings.
After the cabbage and apples have drained return to the pan. Add walnuts. Add dressing mixture. Toss a bit to make sure all of the cabbage and apples are lightly coated. Serve hot.
NOTE: Since I was using cooked sausages I combined them with the cabbage in my cast iron fry pan and tossed. Adding the sausages puts this dish into the category of a Healthy, Low-Carb Choice and also a One Pot Meal.
NOTE: I Googled info about red cabbage and nutrition and found out that the deep ruby veggie is full of great vitamins and has anti-inflammatory properties. Click here now for more information.