I started to think I should just cheat. I'll make Borscht. It's Russian, but no one would care, right? Plus, I have a dangerously good Amish recipe for Borscht that turns even the most Persnickety Beet Averse to Marveling Beet Enthusiasts. Plus, you know, it's pinky-purple. And who doesn't like to eat pinky-purple food?
After some hemming and hawing, it turns out, I'm a Themed-Party-Purist and I couldn't cheat. Not even a little. Somehow copying three quarters of my Junior Year Honors English Final Essay from an essay that a college aged babysitter gave me was totally fine. Making a Russian dish for a German dinner party? Not so fine. Perhaps my moral fiber has grown stronger over the years. Let's hope so. As good as my Borscht would be (and it would have been) I would know its geographical origin. And good food never comes from
I needed reinforcements. Or, more specifically, I needed my sister. Any question that I ever have regarding food, cooking or literature are texted or emailed exclusively to her. She is my one stop resource for those topics. There are times that we have 17 minute long text sessions about the right way to approach the Salade Nicoise or if you should peel or break off the tough stems of asparagus.
|It's pinky-purple. All is right in the world.|
|"If you liked it, then you better put an egg on it." My breakfast philosophy.|
Braised Purple Cabbage - This dish is all great things. It takes very little active prep time. And the result is so divine. The day after dinner club, I ate it for breakfast lunch and dinner. Reed declared that we must plant purple cabbage so that we could make this all summer long. It would be tremendous with a side of pork or sausages or as a tangy accent to any and all rich egg dishes, like this quiche. Please don't wait around for German themed festivities. I recommend you double this recipe if you have a pot big enough. It keeps in the fridge for at least a week. Adapted barely from this recipe.
2 tablespoons oil (most anything works, I used grapeseed)
1/2 small red onion, trimmed and finely chopped
1 large head of purple cabbage, cored and thinly sliced (use the largest knife you have to make this job easier)
1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled and shredded on the large holes of a grater
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 generous tablespoon of honey
1 teaspoon salt
a scant 1/4 teaspoon of caraway seeds
Heat the oil over medium heat in a large heavy pot or dutch oven. Add the red onion and sauté until translucent and fragrant, (do not brown) about five minutes. Add the cabbage, apple, vinegar, honey, salt and caraway seeds. Turn the heat down to medium low and cover. Stir every 15 minutes, for an hour or so.
The cabbage should be silky and soft, but still maintain it's individual shape. We're not making baby food.
Serve warm. And let the salivating commence.