Red red red ~ Ham Pie Sandwiches

17 December 2007

Red red red

It is fall and therefore time for fallification.

This was more than a week ago, so I am having a fairly fuzzy time remembering much about it. Perhaps the camera will tell me things.

Cabbage braised in red wine

half a head of red cabbage
a glass of red wine
salt, some pepper
red or white wine vinegar
caraway seeds
couscous/something with which to eat it

This requires a serious knife.

Core the cabbage and chop it into fine, fine shreds. You want them as fine as possible. Cut across the shreds a couple times so your final product won't cling together in one long string.

Throw it into a medium-warm sauté pan with a big pinch of salt and a glug of vinegar. Turn on the overhead fan and try not to inhale any vinegar fumes; those hurt. Stir it all up and let it soften a little in the heat.

Add a glass of decent red wine, stir again, and reduce the heat. I think I had zinfandel, but it could have been cab or another dry red. Cook slowly, stirring every once in a while, until all the wine has been absorbed and the cabbage is soft and tender and tasty.

Add in a handful of caraway seeds. You wouldn't think these would make that much of a difference, but they do. Oh my god. Without them, the cabbage would still be pretty good, but with them, it turns aromatic and seedy in that way that highly flavored seeds (e.g. fennel, poppyseed) provide. It's almost a rye aroma. They also give the business a more interesting texture, so you get little bits of hard seed to grind up in your teeth along with the soft cabbage. Plus plus. Use them.

Cook for a few minutes longer, then eat.

I had mine over couscous, but you can clearly use whatever. Mashed potatoes would be good, and would turn a pretty spectacular purple when you stirred in the cabbage. They might be a little soft as a texture match, though. Some severe brown rice would be excellent.

If you want to do couscous, do the usual instant method: pour dry cous in bowl, add some olive oil or butter and salt and pepper, cover with very hot but not boiling water, and let sit to absorb, covering if you feel like it. Wait five minutes, check, add more water if needed, wait again. Eat.

I ate the entire half a cabbage myself, with two bowls of couscous.

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