While my husband was in seminary, I had the chance to take advantage of some evening courses offered at Emory University. They were basically for fun, although I did learn some new cooking skills. One of the classes I took was on international cuisine. The following recipe is a traditional German side dish and is perfect to serve in the wintertime. Not only is it tasty and satisfying, but the bright, vivid colors are simply beautiful.
Red Cabbage with Apples
1 medium red cabbage
1 medium red cooking apple (such as Rome)
10 whole allspice berries or 1/4 tsp ground allspice
4 inch strip of orange peel
1/2 cup water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 tablespoons cider vinegar
4 tablespoons sugar (or less)
Quarter the cabbage, cut out and discard the core. Shred cabbage finely. Peel, quarter, and core the apples and cut into small pieces. Bring the cabbage, apples, allspice, orange peel, pepper, salt, and water to a boil. Lower heat and simmer, covered, until cabbage is tender, stirring occasionally (about 20 minutes). Remove orange peel plus the allspice berries as you see them. Add the vinegar and sugar, then salt to taste. Simmer several minutes, then taste and readjust sugar, vinegar, and salt.
This is best if made ahead and reheated to serve, allowing all of the delicately sweet-sour flavors time to meld. However, it is still good if you serve it immediately. I really love red cabbage. Be careful not to cook it to death! I prefer for it to still have a slight firmness and crunch – no mushiness whatsoever. This dish accomplishes that just perfectly. I hope you’ll give it a try!