Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Spiced Braised Red Cabbage with Apples

With chillier autumnal days and the thoughts of lighting the fire in the evenings, my tastes have turned from salads and simple summer dishes to soups, stews and casseroles. Often the accompaniments  with these dishes are just boiled potatoes or buttered cabbage but if I'm braising some stewing steak with only onions and herbs it's nice to make the vegetables a bit more interesting.

Red cabbage is a staple in our kitchen veg basket - I make winter slaws with it, it's great made into a potato hash, I sometimes slow cook it with pork chops and simply serve it with butter and loads of black pepper. But one dish is my favourite - my spiced, braised red cabbage with apples and cider.

This dish is warming, moreish and it slightly sweet but has an edge to it which helps to cut through the rich stews it's served with.

Recipe - serves 4

Half red cabbage
2 red onions
2 eating apples - the sharper the better
half teaspoon mixed spice
100ml cider
half tablespoon golden caster sugar
1 bay leaf
a dash rich balsamic vinegar - fruit flavoured are good such as fig or cherry
pinch salt
loads black pepper

Peel away the outer leaves of the cabbage - they are usually damaged and bruised - core and slice into thick shreds.

Give it a rinse through and set it aside to drain.

Peel and slice the onions; core and slice the apples - but don't peel them - the apples I mean - peel the onions not the apples - you get me? (sometimes my sentence construction leaves a lot to be desired!)

Add a knob of butter or a little olive oil to a heavy based pan and lightly fry the apples, cabbage and onions.

Stir in the mixed spices then add the cider, sugar and bay leaf. Stir well, reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and cook for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes uncover and give all a good stir. Add a good dash of vinegar, a pinch of salt and loads of black pepper. If there is liquid in the bottom of the pan turn up the heat and gently stir whilst it evaporates into a syrupy coating.

Either serve straight away or keep warm until requires.

To ring the changes a handful of raisins, cranberries or walnuts are a great addition, as is a large spoonful of red current jelly!

Have a great day
Love Lizx

 Braised Cabbage