28 November 2010
After last week's paean to the joys of fat, I thought I should perhaps balance it out a little. It might also convince the people that have been making comments about my waistline that: a) I do eat a lot of vegetables actually (and fruit for that matter); and b) I don't spend every waking moment shuttling wheezily between Greggs and KFC.
That's why this week - Simple Pleasure No. 12, if I've got my facts right - I'm celebrating the (stupidly named) red cabbage for a number of reasons. First of all there's the colour. Look at it. Prince would kill for a shirt that colour. Secondly, there are all the myriad health benefits, from Vitamin C to fibre. Thirdly, there's the fact that this particular shining example of cabbagekind came from our allotment. Finally, there's the fact that, on a cold wintery day, nothing - and I'd probably even include mash here - can bolster a stew like a big spoonful of braised red cabbage. It's also the easiest side dish to make, one that you can get creative with (this contains homegrown red onions and garlic, a splash of Cider Brandy - which, with celery salt, is my current "go to" ingredient - a handful of past-their-sell-by dried cranberries and sultanas and nutmeg), one that will happily bubble away in a low oven for hours, one that freezes brilliantly and one that, as it's cooking, can make your entire property smell like Christmas. Not bad for a fist-sized brassica.