Balsamic-Braised Red Cabbage Recipe
I love red cabbage, and I find that some of the best product is available around this time of the year. Its deep ruby color is so appealing. It's very inexpensive and it lasts for a long time. You can either braise, boil, pickle or even purée it.
This evening, I shredded the cabbage and braised it with a balsamic reduction and peanut butter. The result is a lightly sweet and rich side dish. I topped it with shaved sweet Nabulsi cheese for a nice contrast in color.
If you haven’t already, take advantage of this beautiful vegetable at its peak quality. Your taste buds will thank you!
Yields: 6 servings1 large red cabbage
2 shallots, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons creamy peanut butter
1 sprig lemon thyme
¾ cup balsamic fig vinegar (or the balsamic vinegar of your choice)
½ teaspoon black peppercorns (optional), freshly ground
½ cup light brown sugar
3 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper, freshly cracked
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 ounces sweet Nabulsi cheese, shaved
For the balsamic reduction: In a small saucepan, combine the brown sugar, balsamic fig vinegar, ground peppercorns (if using) and lemon thyme. Bring to a boil and let simmer for about 5 minutes. Remove and discard the lemon thyme sprig. Add the peanut butter and stir well. Allow the syrup to cool to room temperature.
Prepping the cabbage: Quarter the cabbage through the root. Thinly shred the cabbage using the appropriate blade of a food processor or a mandoline. .
In a large pot, heat the oil. Add the shallots and cook for 6 minutes until golden. Add the cabbage all at once and sauté for 5 minutes, until slightly wilted. Add about ½ cup of water and stir while cooking for 2 more minutes until evaporated. Drizzle with the balsamic reduction. Toss until well coated and evenly distributed. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to low. Cover and cook for 15 minutes, tossing often to prevent the cabbage from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Finish with butter; toss well for a few minutes until the butter is completely melted.
Transfer to a serving platter, let cool for at least 15 minutes and sprinkle with the shaved sweet cheese.
You can find Nalbulsi cheese in Indian/Pakistani markets. It's similar to feta cheese but much milder and sweeter and studded with caraway seeds. You could also use Haloumi cheese. I used Karoun brand Nabulsi cheese.October 31, 2013.