Autumn Braised Red Cabbage

Alright, I think I’m finally getting into the swing of the seasons changing.

Sometimes all it takes is a Sunday trip to the apple orchard for some pickin’ to get me in the spirit.

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And now I have about 400 pounds of apples, so if I know where you live you should expect baked goods on your doorstep in the near future.

But I have a feeling that even if I make enough apple crisp to feed all of my readers I’ll still have some apples left over. Which means that I’ve been thinking up ways to use some up in savory, rather than sweet, applications.

A girl can only make so many apple desserts after all.

This Autumn Braised Red Cabbage has a slight tangy, sweet quality thanks to the addition of a thinly sliced apple and plenty of seasoning.

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Autumn Braised Red Cabbage
serves 4

1/2 medium head red cabbage (about a pound)
1/2 medium onion
1 medium apple (any variety, I used a Jonathan)
2 slices center cut bacon (or about 1/2 T butter if making vegetarian)
1 T apple cider vinegar
salt+pepper to taste (probably between 1/2-1 t salt and 1/4-1/2 t pepper)
1/4 t Italian seasoning
1 1/2 cups chicken (or vegetable) broth

1. Place bacon in a skillet over medium-low heat and allow to cook until crisp. Remove to paper towels, leaving bacon renderings in the skillet. (note: if making vegetarian, skip this step and simply heat butter in skillet for step 4)
2. While bacon cooks, remove tough outer leaves from cabbage and cut out the core.  Thinly slice and set aside.
3. Thinly slice onion into half-moons and peel and cut apple into matchsticks.
4. Increase heat under skillet to medium and add onions and apples.  Cook for about 5 minutes, until soft and onion is translucent but not brown.  Add cabbage and continue to sauté for an additional 3-4 minutes.
5. Add salt, pepper and Italian seasoning (if you don’t have Italian seasoning, use 1/8 t each rosemary and oregano) and vinegar and toss to combine.  Allow vinegar to cook out for a few minutes, then add the broth and cover.
6. Once the liquid comes to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and braise for about 30 minutes until the cabbage is very tender. Taste and add additional seasoning if needed.  Crumble bacon and combine with cabbage mixture. Serve warm.

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Mmm, bacon.  I really should have made extra to eat while waiting for the cabbage to cook.  Cooking bacon and then being forced to NOT eat it while waiting for the rest of the food to cook is a very real and painful form of torture.

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This is the part of the process that starts smelling really good. If you’re hungry at this point, you’re going to need to find an activity to distract yourself.  Also, you’ll still be smelling the bacon. Sorry.

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Yessss.

To accompany the cabbage, I made roasted green beans (spray with oil, and season with garlic salt and pepper, bake at 400° for about 25 minutes until slightly crispy) and simple seared chicken breasts with a pan sauce that I made by deglazing the pan with some chicken stock.

If you’re still stuck on summer and need something to bust you out of a rut, this cabbage will deliver.  I mean, look at that color. You can’t be mad at that color.

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6 thoughts on “Autumn Braised Red Cabbage

  1. Oh how I love going to apple orchards! I feel like I need to take a trip back to Chicago for this specific purpose – that or figure out where they have them here in AZ. 🙂 Love the looks of this cabbage. Anything is better with bacon.

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