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Related Ingredients
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Tasting Notes

This simple side brings vivid color and an unexpected flavor to the table.

A punchy, acidic mix of malt vinegar and red wine helps cut through the richness of the red cabbage while breaking down the vegetable’s crunchy texture and taming its natural bitterness. The uniquely floral and slightly peppery taste of star anise imparts a surprising and unexpectedly pleasant depth of flavor. Honey adds a touch of sweetness, and freshly ground black pepper finishes the dish with a hint of heat.

Tips & Techniques

  1. Don’t scramble for a strainer. Before you begin, place a strainer and a bowl within reach of your stovetop. You’ll use this to catch some of the braising liquid, which will be used later for the Caramel Apple Gastrique.
  2. Barely braised. The cabbage is cooked in liquid over low heat, but it doesn’t take as long as a traditional braise. In 15 to 20 minutes, you can soften the raw flavor and texture of the leaves without losing all of the cabbage’s crunch.
  3. Color me delicious. Vinegar works well as a base for the braising liquid because it enhances the flavor of the cabbage without making it soggy. Plus, the vinegar preserves the cabbage’s deep magenta hue.

Toolbox

These tools are the ones we find especially helpful when making this dish.

  1. Sautoir. A sautoir is a pan with a wide, flat cooking surface, straight sides and a long handle. This type of pan works best for braising the cabbage.

The list below includes all the equipment you’ll want to make this dish.

Tongs

Large sauté pan or sautoir

Rubber spatula or wooden spoon

Mesh tea ball
Strainer over bowl


Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup grapeseed oil
  • 1 head red cabbage, quartered, cored and cut into 1/4-inch thick slices (about 1 ½ pounds)
  • 1/2 medium white onion, cut into 1/4 inch thick slices
  • 2 pieces star anise
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2/3 cup malt vinegar
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Serves: 4

Total Time: 30 minutes

Active Time: 10 minutes

Method
  1. Set a large sauce pan over high heat. Add the grapeseed oil. Once hot, add the sliced cabbage and onions gradually, about a quarter of each at a time, allowing each addition to sweat for 20-30 seconds before adding more. Stir together and season with salt and pepper. Next incorporate the honey and the malt vinegar into the cabbage. Continue to cook until the cabbage and onions begin to release liquid, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  2. Place the star anise in a mesh tea ball or tea bag. Pour the red wine over the cabbage and add the star anise to the onion, wine and cabbage mixture.
  3. Lower the heat and braise until the cabbage is very tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
  4. Drain cabbage mixture in a strainer over a bowl to reserve braising liquid for the Apple Gastrique. Remove tea ball and discard star anise. Season cabbage mixture to taste with salt and pepper.

Here is a great way to turn this dish into a meal

Bratworst and cabbage with fingerling potatoes

Keep things simple by serving the cabbage with bratworst and potatoes. We love diced fingerling potatoes that have been tossed with oil and caraway seeds and roasted at 450°F until crispy.

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