Braised Red Cabbage

Braised Red Cabbage
Red Cabbage, a great food for Digestion and Blood

Braised Red Cabbage is a delicious addition to many meals. And good for you too!

Red cabbage is like green cabbage but … it’s red! Or rather, purple.

Cooked the way explained below it tastes a lot better than ordinary green cabbage too! Also, I think it’s easier to digest.

Benefits of Braised Red Cabbage?


Green cabbage is usually cooling, but red cabbage is possibly less cooling than green cabbage. This dish is probably slightly warming. (For more on this see our pages on Cooling-Cold foods, and our other page on Warming-Hot foods.)

Casserole for braised red cabbage, well fitting lid
Casserole that I use to make Braised Red Cabbage

You will need a large thick-bottomed pan with a well-fitting lid.

Ingredients for Braised Red Cabbage

  • 600 – 1000g Red cabbage
  • One onion: sliced
  • Two knobs of 30g butter
  • 2 cooking apples (though I often use eating apples): clean and quarter them, (no need to peel them unless very damaged) then remove the stalk and pips and slice the apple into smaller parts. The pips and stalk can go into your compost bin. Lay the sliced apples aside
  • 2 -3 tablespoons of red wine vinegar (apple cider works equally well)
  • 2 rounded tablespoons of brown sugar (molasses type)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Up to 4 tablespoons of water or stock liquid

Method for preparing your braised red cabbage

  • Set your oven to 160C
  • Wash the red cabbage
  • Quarter it and chop out the thick white stalk from each quarter (these white stalks go into your compost bin)
  • Chop the remaining red cabbage into small bits, and lay aside. (I used to use the electric shedder for this, but can’t be bothered with it now! Faster to chop it by hand.)
  • Place one knob of butter in the pan and melt it over heat
  • Add the chopped onion and cook it in the butter until soft (but not coloured). (This takes several minutes.)
  • Add the chopped apple to the softened onion. Stir the onion-apple mixture until the apple goes soft and mushy. Try not to let it burn. (This takes up to five minutes depending on quantities.)
  • Remove the onion-apple mush from the pan and lay this mush aside
  • Remove the pan from the heat
  • Gradually add the chopped red cabbage to the pan, alternating it with layers of the onion-apple mixture
  • After adding each layer, sprinkle some of the pepper, salt and sugar over it
  • When all the cabbage and apple-onion mush has been layered in the pan, sprinkle the vinegar over it
  • Sprinkle some of the water or liquid stock over the top, to wash the salt, pepper and sugar into the mixture
  • Place a knob of butter on top
  • Place the lid on top. (If the lid does not fit properly, you can use buttered paper instead, directly over the  mixture – shaped to the inside of the pan: then place the lid on top.)
  • Place the pan, with its lid on, in the heated oven, middle shelf

Cooking your Red Cabbage

  • At 160C the mixture will cook slowly.
  • Check it after one hour. At this stage, stir it and check it’s not burning or too dry: if very dry, add a little more water or stock liquid.
  • Leave it in the oven for 90 to 120 minutes altogether.
  • Turn off the heat and let your braised red cabbage cool gradually as the oven cools, or remove it from the oven and let it cool on a cooling rack.
  • When cool enough to taste, decide whether it needs more salt or sugar. It should taste slightly sweet and sour. However, it’s better to add the salt and pepper before cooking.
  • Its taste gradually improves overnight. So ideally, cook it the day before it’s needed.
  • Reheat it before serving (stir while re-heating to stop it sticking or burning). Or serve it cold. (But Chinese medicine suggests it will be more easily digested when served warm.)

Other recipes on this site:

A food for the hungry
Oatcakes with Cheese – delicious!

If you’re interested in Nutrition from an Asian perspective:




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