The weather lulled me in. A few weeks ago it was sunny and beautiful and blooms were abound. Happy, sun-soaked people were beginning to whisper “printemps est arrivé” (Spring has arrived). There I was thinking the weather was on the up and up: it could only get warmer from here on out! Mais non, pas encore. Last weekend brought another cold snap, and with it came the return of my craving for piping hot veggies cooked in the oven, and particularly braised cabbage. I know some of you may be rolling your eyes thinking that if I think this winter is bad then I must not know what a real winter is…to which I would say, you’re absolutely right. I grew up in California, and more specifically San Diego, where the weather is…perfect. All year round. My parents told me it was 80 degrees there the other day. In March. So yeah, this mild Breton winter has felt harsh to me. Hence, all the soul-warming braised cabbage.
1 head green cabbage, medium-sized
2 large yellow onions
4 large carrots, cut at the diagonal into 2 inch slices
1/4-1/2 cup chicken or vegetable stock (water can be substituted in a pinch)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
coarse salt and pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit (180 degrees Celsius). Cut the cabbage in half and then quarter each half. You should have 8 thick wedges. Layer the wedges in a casserole dish and evenly distribute the onions and carrots.
Pour the olive oil and broth over the veggies and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover the dish tightly with aluminum foil and cook in oven for roughly 2 hours. Check the cabbage halfway through cooking to ensure that the leaves are not at all dry. If they are, add a few more tablespoons of broth and/or olive oil.
Turn the oven up to 400 degrees. Return the cabbage to the oven without the aluminum foil cover and roast until the cabbage leaves brown at the edges.
Remove and serve!
Braised cabbage is super versatile. Try braising red cabbage instead of green, it’s equally delicious and chock full of happy little vitamins and minerals. Instead of the onion and carrot, try leeks and celery root. Try adding a dash of chili flakes or apple cider vinegar. Be creative! Cabbage loves a lot of things. You can serve it as a side at dinner or it can be a meal in itself. Lately my favorite thing is top a heap of cabbage with a fried egg or sausage. Everything is better with a fried egg atop it, n’est-ce pas?