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Cooking with savoy cabbage

Savoy cabbage has crinkled-looking leaves and a mild nutty flavour, which is slightly more pronounced in winter. Many people like to eat this cabbage sliced very, very thinly in a salad. But you can cook it in a wok, add it to soups, stews and risottos or bake it in a quiche. Use the big outer leaves for making stuffed cabbage filled with mince, salmon or mushrooms.

Here’s the way to make a delicious side dish for meat or fish. Slice the cabbage very thinly, and blanch for 3 to4 minutes in boiling salted water. Drain, chill in cold water and drain again. Then melt some butter in a pan and brown the cabbage until it is golden brown. Salt and pepper and serve. In Sicily they add tomatoes, raisins and pinenuts. Savoy cabbage also combines well with potatoes, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, capers and seafood. Spice it with caraway seeds, cloves, coriander, nutmeg or garlic.

 

Health benefits and origin

Savoy cabbage supplies vitamin C, important for your immune system, especially in winter. It also contains provitamin A, vitamins B6 and E, folic acid, potassium, calcium and iron, dietary fibre and secondary plant compounds. It’s the ideal low-calorie food with a mere 25 kilocalories per 100 grams. Savoy cabbage probably came originally from the areas around the Mediterranean, but it’s been grown successfully in northern Europe since the 18th century.

 

What to look for and how to store

Savoy cabbage is available to buy all year round. You can tell whether the cabbage is fresh by checking for crisp outer leaves without any dark patches and for a fresh, moist-looking cut surface on the stalk. A fresh savoy cabbage will rustle if you shake it and it will keep for up to a week in the fridge.

Source: Heike Kreutz, www.aid.de

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