Tuesday, November 3, 2009
I'm a little late in posting this weeks Fall Into Flavor...do forgive. I've been editing photos and more photos from the myriad of fall photoshoots from October. Now that it's cooler and the leaves are all dull and crunchy, there are less requests for photoshoots. Also, the Hubs and I have been hosting friends for dinners (which has been all too fun!) and it's gotten me out of my dull cooking habits. I'm enjoying stepping out of the box (literally - boxed dinners) with a little homemade (from scratch!) German flair! Sylvia - you might like some of these!
So, this week, I'll share one colorful and zesty sidedish that I call "German Red Cabbage." I'm sure there is an official German name...I may have to get back to you on that one in a few years. ;)
I decided that red cabbage is now one of my favorite...vegetables??? For a very shallow reason: it's color. Isn't it stunning? I must admit, my crush goes further. It actually tastes fabulous, too! It's kind of a "meaty," if you will, kind of cabbage with a sweet taste. I like it. Alot.
I have to say, the recipe says to cut it into strips. I was lazy, and used scissors. Plus, it made cooking feel more like craft-time! ;)
I also must admit my complete ignorance when it comes to spices. I actually had to buy all of these. None of them were already in my pantry. Not to mention, I had to ask a fellow shopper in the grocery store where to find a Bay Leaf! I was looking in the produce section, expecting to find it with the Cilantro and Parsley (which, I apparently can't tell the difference between, as my meat dish called for fresh Parsley and I ended up with Cilantro...nice).
My favorite part about this recipe has to be the apples, though. It adds just the right amount of sweetness and tartness. And it's an apple...who doesn't like apples in the fall?
Speaking of fall - - this recipe calls for a Dutch Oven (yeah, I don't know what the connection is, either...just thought I would make myself a nice segway with the whole "fall" thing). And another admittance of total culinary ignorance: I don't really know what a Dutch Oven is. I mean, Hello...where am I going to find a Dutch Oven in America anyway? Plus, I'm making a German meal - so it just wouldn't do. What did 'do' then, you ask? A crockpot, friends. Love 'em. I pretty much let this cabbage stuff simmer on low for like, 6 hours. It's forgiving like that, it seems. And, the whole apartment smelled lovely like red cabbage and sweeeeeeeet apples!
Here's how it's done folks...
♥ 1 medium red cabbage, cored and sliced (or cut with kitchen shears)
♥ 2 lart tart apples, peeled and sliced
♥ 1 medium sweet onion, sliced and separated into rings
♥ 1 1/2 cups of water
♥ 1 cup cider vinegar
♥ 1/2 cup sugar
♥ 1 TBS butter
♥ 1 tsp salt
♥ 6 whole peppercorns
♥ 2 whole allspice
♥ 2 whole cloves
♥ 1 bay leaf
♥ 2 TBS cornstarch (which I totally forgot about, so if you forget, it'll still be yummy)
♥ 2 tsp cold water (aaand, I forgot about this, too)
♥ In a Dutch over (or crock pot), toss cabbage, apples and onions. Add water, vinegar, sugar, butter and salt. Place the peppercorns, allspice, cloves and bay leaf on a double thickness of cheesecloth (I used a coffee filter). Add to Dutch oven, bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 1/4 hours.
♥ Discard spice bag. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and cold water until smooth; stir in cabbage mixture. Bring to a boil; cook and stor for 1-2 minutes or until thickened (wish I would have done this part...it was too soupy!)