(feeds 8 humans)
Cabbage is a wonderful vegetable with a boring reputation, suitable for greater purposes than simply making slaw time and time again. Late spring brings a number of varieties of cabbages from standard head cabbage to napa, green to red, as well as family members such as cauliflower. Spring also brings wonderful garlic delicacies: green garlic and garlic scapes (both of which are misunderstood and frequently ignored at markets). This recipe will show you an easy, delicious and unique way to use these hidden gems and impress your friends + family. Do your prep work in advance, like we do in restaurants, so that you can enjoy your company when you entertain, not feel burdened by them!
1 head of green cabbage
1 head of red cabbage
Enough sausage for 8 adults (at least 1 link per person)
1 bunch of garlic scapes
2 stalks of green garlic
Enough butter to make things taste good
Campari (just enough to deglaze and steam off)
1/2 cup of cider vinegar
1/2 cup of honey
1/2 cup WHOLE coffee beans
1.5 cups neutral oil (corn/vegetable/etc)
For the vinaigrette, put the ½ cup of cider vinegar, ½ cup of honey and whole coffee beans
in a blender with three pinches of salt and turn the blender on high; slowly emulsify the oil
in. Reserved somewhere cool and dark, this vinaigrette will keep for a few weeks and a few
more if kept in the fridge.
To deal with the red cabbage and the garlics, put a good sized pot on low flame to pre-heat.
Split the head of cabbage in quarters, remove the segments of core, and chop roughly. Cut
the green garlic bulb a few inches after the green has started. You can use the tougher
green tops in stock or braising projects, or you can blanch it in baking soda water and
puree it with a little salt and honey for a nice sauce for fish. Cut the scapes into bite size
pieces. When all the cutting is done, add a few hefty nobs of butter into the pot and cook
the cabbage and garlic over medium flame, gently, until they are very soft and pleasant
smelling. Do not be afraid to randomly add nobs of butter through this whole process (it
will not hurt). Season the veggies well with kosher salt, then turn the heat on high and
deglaze with Campari, a good splash of cider vinegar and a nice bit of honey. While this is
boiling, add a few more nobs of butter. Turn the heat off when you see the butter has
emulsified into the sauce. Cool down and reserve in the fridge for up to two weeks. For the
green cabbage, remove the core and cut into whatever size pieces you desire; simply blanch
in boiling water for a few seconds and immediately shock it in ice water (WITH ENOUGH
ICE TO MAKE IT COLD!). This can also be reserved in the fridge for a few days.
When the time comes to eat, get a skillet on medium flame for the sausage (which you
should allow to come to room temp before searing) and a pot on medium flame for the
veggies. Add neutral oil to the sausage pan and sear the sausages on all sides until they
look sexy and are warm through. In the other pan, add a nob of butter, and when it turns
brown, add your cooked red cabbage and garlic mix until it loosens from the heat. At the
last moment, fold in your pretty green cabbage (so its color is not lost) and plate it adorned
by a glorious sausage. Liberally douse your sausage and cabbage with coffee vinaigrette
and enjoy, most importantly, with ample fruity red wine or malty ale amidst the wonderful
company of your guests.
Should you wish to make your own sausage, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I
will provide you my recipe for this sausage, gladly!