Monday, October 30, 2006

Red cabbage with prosciutto

The best thing about cured meat is how long it can sit in your fridge. Really good prosciutto must be cured for a couple years, so I guess I accidentally improved on the supermarket crap that has been lurking near the crisper since time immemorial. Monday night, it made a bid for freedom:

I sliced most of a pack of prosciutto into thin strips and fried them in their own fat over a high heat. When it seemed too dry and as if it might burn, I added some bacon fat. When the prosciutto was crispy and browned, I added a handful each of pignoli and dried cranberries. Tossed together for a minute over high heat, then added 1/2 well-shredded red cabbage. Turned down the heat a little for fear of burning the pignoli. Continued to toss the cabbage with the other ingredients until coated with the pan oils and all was very well combined. When cabbage was wilted yet not too soft (about 7 minutes of tossing in pan over heat), turned off heat and added a small splash of balsamic vinegar and a teaspoon of brown sugar. Stirred well and covered.

Melted a little butter plus some chicken fat and added 1 cup of toasted pearl couscous. Browned lightly, then added 2 cups chicken stock and brought to boil, the turned to simmer and covered. When liquid was mostly absorbed, added 1/4 cup minced parsley, stirred and covered again. Added about 2 tablespoons of grated provolone, stirred and removed from heat. Added juice and zest of one lemon, stirred again and covered.

In the oven I crisped the heel of a ficelle, my favorite part.

Valdivieso merlot to drink and it was a pleasant surprise.


biotecchie said...

This reminds me for some reason of my own recipe for "Sweet and Sour Cabbage". This is a vegan dish that can be made in a single pot. I am sure you could improve on it, but it goes something like this:


1/2 to 3/4 head of a medium green cabbage, 1/4 head of red cabbage; raisins, plums, sunflower seeds (or slivered almonds), one large, sweet orange; 1/4 cup honey; 2-3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper

1. Start with a large cast iron pot- 2. Remove the outer leaves of the cabbages and cut them up into medium size chunks (about half the size of the palm of your hand) - alternately, you can cut it into 1/2 inch strips.
3. Layer the cabbage into the bottom of the pot alternating the white and red. Add salt and pepper to taste.
4. Remove the pits from 2-3 plums and slice them into quarters; layer them over the cabbage.*
5. Peel the orange and keep the peel for the last step; separate the sections and cut them in half crosswise. Layer these over the plums*
6. Add the raisins and sliced almonds over the top.
7. Add the honey and vinegar over the top of the raisins.
7. Place the orange peel over the top of the raisins and cover securely with the lid.
8. Place the pot on the burner with low heat. It should be done in 15 minutes.

The cabbage, orange and plums will generate their own juices.

*you can mix these into the cabbage if you wish, but it is easier to mix it up after the cabbage has cooked.

Serve with California short grain brown rice/wheat berries. I usually make this by combining 3/4 cup of short grain brown rice with 1/4 cup of winter wheat berries. Start by boiling 2 cups of water; add the 1/4 cup of wheat berries to give them a head start; after about 5 minutes add the 3/4 cup of short grain brown rice; cover; simmer for a total of about 45 minutes.

carla said...

That's delicious. I wonder if that's where I got the idea from originally?

francesca said...

it is delicious...deliciously farty, that is :)