Honestly, cabbage isn’t one of my favorite foods but it’s always in my Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) box and I’ve had to find ways to use it. This is one of the benefits of being a member of a CSA, you often have to learn about new foods as well as new ways to use them. Cabbage is one of those foods in our house.
Here’s the thing about cabbage – it’s been cultivated for more than 4,000 years, is considered the national food of Russia, and the people of Germany couldn’t make sauerkraut without cabbage. Obviously it’s time for me to embrace some cabbage recipes.
Cabbage is an amazing detoxification food. It is a cruciferous vegetable high in sulfur compounds which increase the liver’s ability to produce enzymes that neutralize potentially toxic substances. It is a concentrated source of goitrogens though so for certain people with thyroid difficulties this is not a food to over indulge.
Cabbage Health Tips
The Vitamin C in cabbage starts to quickly degrade one the cabbage has been cut so either purchase small heads of cabbage and use it all or store a partial head of cabbage for only a few days.
Similar to onions and garlic, the best health benefit occurs when you thinly slice the cabbage and allow it to rest for 5-10 minute. When slicing the cell walls are broken down and an enzyme called myrosinase is activated that slowly converts some of the plant nutrients into their active forms. This has been shown to have the most health promoting properties. Just slice and allow to rest before eating or cooking.
Cooking and heating inactivates the effect of myrosinase so it’s important to all the cabbage to rest. Cooking at low-medium temperatures for short periods helps keep the active phytonutrients from being destroyed since one they are formed they are fairly stable. So, this cabbage recipe recommends both techniques for your best health.
- 1-2 cloves garlic
- Shallots to equal ¼ cup
- 1 small head green cabbage
- 1 Tbsp whole grain mustard
- 1 tsp curry powder
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- 1 Tbsp ghee
- 2-3 Tbsp broth
- 2 Tbsp rice vinegar
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- Finely mince garlic and shallots – allow to rest for 5-10 minutes.
- Thinly slice cabbage – allow to rest for 5-10 minutes.
- Whisk together mustard, curry and turmeric.
- Heat ghee in skillet. Add shallots and sauté for about a minute. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant – 30 seconds to a minute.
- Add mustard mix and cook another minute – stirring constantly.
- Stir in cabbage, broth and vinegar.
- Cook 5 minutes or until tender, stirring frequently.
- Season with sea salt and pepper if desired.