I decided three weeks ago to begin exploring this list of 13 in my weekly Pick of the Week blog, simply because I am trying to eat better. We've already looked at avocados, apples and blueberries. So far, this list is extraordinary.
Everyday Health chose cabbage because of its nutritional value. It is a member of the Brassica genus, and according to the Web site, of all the members of this family, cabbage is the most impressive.These vegetables, which also include broccoli and bok choy, contain compounds called indoles, which have been shown to reduce the risk of cancer. Want more reasons to eat cabbage? It also stimulates the immune system, kills bacteria and viruses, and is a good blood purifier. And if you eat red cabbage, you'll also get a healthy does of anthocyanins -- the same pigment molecules that make blueberries blue -- which is another powerful antioxidant.
For me, cabbage screams comfort and my mom. Her red cabbage and sauerkraut recipes graced our dinner table at least once a week. Stuffed cabbage rolls and sekule goulash. a pork, sour cream and cabbage concoction, were two meals I would beg her to make. It was the food from her childhood, and she made sure it was the food of mine as well.
When I am feeling really lazy, I buy already shredded cabbage, but recently I stopped that nonsense and cut it up myself. It takes mere minutes, and it has a fresher taste and definitely more crunch. I happen to be a big fan of crunch.
Choose: Like just about every other vegetable, pick it up. You're not looking for a lightweight here, but a cabbage that feels heavy for its size. The color should be a nice bright green or red.
Storing: At home, wrap it in plastic wrap or place in a bag and refrigerate up to a week. I've been known to keep some heads a tad longer with no bad results.
Today's recipe is not one from my childhood, because honestly none of them qualify as healthy. Too much butter, bacon grease, sour cream and sugar. So I chose a recipe I make all the time, quite often for guests, and I've never had any complaints yet.
ASIAN COLE SLAW
2 lbs. cabbage, shredded (and yes, you can use already shredded cabbage)
2 carrots, peeled
4 scallions with green tops, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 8-oz. can water chestnuts, drained, rinsed, dried
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
2 Tblsp. light soy sauce
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup unsweetened rice wine vinegar
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
1/4 cup orange juice
- Place already shredded cabbage in bowl, or shred cabbage with thin or medium slicing blade of food processor.
- Shred carrots with thin or medium slicing blade of food processor.
- Add carrots, scallions and water chestnuts to cabbage. For longer storage, cover and place in the refrigerator.
- Dressing: Place garlic and ginger in food processor fitted with metal blade. Mince. Add remaining ingredients; process until blended.
- Toss dressing into into cabbage mixture. Refrigerate at least one hour.
- Dressing can be made a day in advance and stored separately until an hour before serving, when it should be mixed with vegetables. Makes 10 servings.