People think of cabbage and they think of sauerkraut and other heavy, wintery fare. But this member of Brassica family (a relative of broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower and kale) also shines in summer. It’s easy to prepare. It’s nutritious. What’s a cookout without coleslaw?
Choose heads of cabbage that feel firm and heavy for its size. The leaves should look crisp, not wilted or yellowed. Size doesn’t matter as far as flavor goes. You’ll find Dutch head cabbages – the most common variety – in green and red, super sweet Savoy cabbages and crinkly Napa cabbages, which look a lot like lettuce.
Keep your cabbage in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. It’ll be good for a week or more. Leave the outer leaves on so that it stays moist while you are storing it. Remove them when it’s time to cook.
A great way to enjoy cabbage during the summer months is to eat it raw in salads and slaws, which showcases its sweet flavor and pleasing crunch. If you’ve ever had a grinder (pronounced grind-ah) from the Northeast, you know it’s shredded cabbage, not lettuce that makes this iconic sandwich. Cabbage holds up well so it’s a perfect make ahead side. Try cabbage in a stir-fry with other veggies or shrimp. Or boil it for five to seven minutes then season with butter, parsley and pepper – perfecto!