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Something creative to do with a HUGE head of cabbage?

I am a fairly good cook who has recently obtained a rather large head of cabbage. I don't really want 200 lbs of coleslaw or corned beef and cabbage? What is something challenging and fun I can do with this sucker?

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  1. Sauerkraut? At least you'll be able to keep it for a while and eat it little by little :)

    1 Reply
    1. re: foodperestroika

      Oh YEAH! Do you have a particular recipe you like?

    2. cabbage soup: borscht.
      several varieties of borscht can be made: hot and cold, with or without beets, with or without tomatoes.
      in Azerbaijani cuisine and Iranian cuisine borscht is usually based on with cabbage.
      in other parts of the world it is primarily beet-based but may still contain copious amounts of cabbage.

      1. grilling is an oft-overlooked (and delicious!) option. and if you don't have a grill, a cast-iron pan will produce similarly tasty results.

        slice the cabbage in half - leaving the core intact - then cut the halves into thick slices. brush the slices with oil, season with salt & pepper, and lay them on a hot grill (or in a hot cast iron pan). cook on each side until softened and lightly charred but not blackened.

        you can serve it as-is, or season/jazz it up further:
        - serve with a lemony vinaigrette and shaved Parm
        - drizzle with good aged balsamic
        - serve as a composed salad with tomato, bacon, shaved Parm and a buttermilk dressing
        - drizzle with a vinaigrette of tamari or soy sauce, sesame oil and rice vinegar, and garnish with toasted sesame seeds, minced scallion & cilantro, basil or mint (you can also add a dash of sriracha or a pinch of chile for some heat)
        - drizzle with a mustardy sherry vinaigrette and garnish with toasted caraway seeds

        you get the idea ;)

        2 Replies
        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

          All of that sounds divine, actually. I love sesame oil... and toasted sesame seeds with the scallions and fresh herbs? My mouth is watering.

          1. You could make a Spanish Cabbage Tort usually stuffed with seasoned pork and served with a smokey tomato sauce. but the recipe is easily adapted and added to.

            1. How about Chanko -nabe. I make it every so often, using regular chopped cabbage as one of the ingredients. It is quite delicious.
              Here are some ideas, as there are many recipes to be found for this dish.

              1. You have a head of cabbage that would produce 200 pounds of coleslaw?

                Use the cabbage as an ingredient in a batch of minestrone.

                1. Some background info: my hubby and I have *both* had gastric bypass, so I routinely make several things out of one head of cabbage, otherwise we get sick of it. Some of the more common things:

                  1. Cabbage rolls -- save the biggest leaves, microwave to soften, stuff with meat (or rice if you're vegetarian), stew in sweet-sour tomato sauce. Yummy, but a lot of trouble.
                  2. Southern boiled cabbage with smoked meat.
                  3. Mushu anything -- serve with hoisin sauce and flour tortillas (easier to find around here than authentic scallion pancakes).
                  4. Stir fry.
                  5. Blanched buttered cabbage with salt & pepper.
                  6. Cole slaw as a last resort. I don't make very good cole slaw. :(

                  2 Replies
                    1. re: Chowbird

                      If you salt the shredded cabbage and let it sit in a colander for quite a while (my last batch went for 3 hours!) the excess water will drain away and the coleslaw will be tender. Rinse and dry thoroughly before proceeding with your recipe...hope this helps!

                    2. in addition to some of the awesome ideas here, cabbage is surprisingly tasty when roasted. see: http://www.thekitchn.com/easy-winter-.... i didn't even use bacon when i roasted mine and it was still very good and flavorful.

                        1. Well, you don't have to use the whole head at once. I have found that a cut head will keep for several weeks in the refrigerator. Just put it in and wrap tightly with a plastic grocery store bag. May have to discard a thin slice from the already cut area but the rest will be fine.

                          Plain steamed cabbage, coleslaw and Haluski are my favorite things to do with cabbage. Haluski is crazy good. Oh, and kimchi is not bad made with regular cabbage.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: kengk

                            It is better, IMO, to use a cabbage from the outside in, removing as many leaves as needed. You'll need to cut through just the thick base of the leaf to release it from the head, then lift that end and peel off the leaf. That way the head remains fresh throughout, without developing any pungent smell. Keep the unused part wrapped in a plastic bag, with a damp paper towel. It will last in the refrigerator for months.

                            Braised cabbage (I like to include apples/cider, vinegar, sugar, garlic, onion, pepper, and caraway) freezes very well, if you need to dispatch the head so as to reduce the space taken up in the fridge.

                            1. re: kengk

                              Agree. There is a reason why cabbage is peasant food. It will last pretty long if kept in cold storage. As to whether to chop it in 1/2 or separate the leaves from the outside in, it probably depends on how you are using the cabbage. If for a slaw or other preparation that involves shredding, you will want all of the layers intact, not as separate leaves.

                              There are lots of cabbage salads or slaws besides the traditional mayonnaise based "cole slaw.". Last night I made a cilantro & cabbage slaw as garnish to serve with chicken tacos -- derived from a recipe I found on epicurious, which called for using commercially packaged slaw mix. The ratios were 7 cups shredded cabbage, 1 cup coarse chopped cilantro leaves, dressed with equal parts (3 tbs) lime juice and canola oil, seasoned with salt, pepper, and ground cumin. If served separately, as a side dish, I'd probably add some red onion and shredded carrots.

                              1. re: masha

                                Further to my description of the cilantro slaw that I made yesterday, I had a couple of cups leftover that i used as a base for a southwest chicken salad today. Took the leftover cilantro slaw and added in some leftover tomato-corn salad (corn, quartered grape tomatoes, cilantro, red onion, dressed with olive oil, lime juice, rice wine vinegar, and salt), chopped grilled chicken, and topped with some crumbled tortilla chips. A real success.

                            2. Braised cabbage with carrots and onions is super tasty! http://www.simmerdownfood.com/tag/all...

                              1. Marcella Hazan's smothered cabbage--just shredded cabbage, onion, garlic, olive oil, salt, and pepper, cooked for 1.5 hours or so. Just made some tonight from a 2.5 lb head of cabbage!

                                  1. Pancit Canton is a delicious noodle dish from the Philippines that uses a half a large head of cabbage at a time. And it's a one pot meal. And it's super tasty. Mmm. I think I need to go buy cabbage.

                                    1. Don't forget making spring rolls with it. And you can add it to stir fry. Yum!!

                                        1. Every time I se this post, I think of the huge football shaped cabbages I used to see all the time in Cairo. They were absolutely enormous, and were a main part of the diet of the average Cairene. They used these cabbages to make mashie, which was a stuffed cabbage dish made with rice stuffing and layered in a pot with tomato/chicken sauce and cooked on the stove. The rolls were c igar shaped, and not much bigger. So, stuffed cabbage is one excellent use for a lot of cabbage, and you could probably freeze the extras.

                                          1. I ran across this recipe several weeks ago and we really enjoyed it. it has anchovies, lemon zest and garlic and it's really great!