Braised Savoy Cabbage

Ok. To start with I shall give the dictionary deffinition of “braise”. Mainly because, if you you asked me, my answer would begin – um, er, well um, you know it’s sort of….blah, blah. So; “braise” v. to fry (food) lightly, then stew slowly in a closed container”. Now you know. We had braised cabbage with our very English bangers and mash, of which you can see a picture a few posts ago. A picture that my wife pointed out, looks rather phallic. Well, it is a men’s cookery club.


  • A splash of Olive Oil
  • A splash of water
  • 4 pinches of fennel seeds
  • Savoy cabbage (the wrinkley one)

Cut the cabbage into quarters and remove the heart. That is the hard bit at the bootom which would be quite tough. So get shot of it. Then slice the cabbage quite thinly starting at either end. This way you will get lovely strips of cabbage.

Get your pan (with a lid), add a splash of olive oil and the fennel seeds then turn up the heat. When its hot chuck in your cabbage, being super carefull not to splash hot oil on your sensitive arms. This will be the frying lightly part. Keep the cabbage moving about with your wooden spoon, which achieves two goals; stirring the fennel in and not burning the cabbage. This will only take a couple of minutes.

When the lightly frying part is done, carfully add a splash of water. I say carefully, as, while the oil will be well mixed in, it is notoriously bad at mixing with water and may just spit at you a bit. How much is a splash? Enough to cover the bottom of the pan, I reckon. You can always add more. Bung the lid on, thus making your closed container. And braise away, for about, ooh 10 minutes. The best way to know if its ready is to try a bit, if you like what you taste , it’s ready.

It went really well with our Bangers and Mash. It adds a nice bit of colour and it’s good for you, so there. Try it with anything you fancy and see if it works

6 thoughts on “Braised Savoy Cabbage”

  1. Is this the way to make German cabbage as well? We just came back from Munich and much to my surprise the food was fabulous! The cabbage was made with caraway seeds and, I’m sure, a ton of butter. It was sooo good!
    BTW, love your new look!

  2. Kathy, I hope you had a good holiday in the depths of northern Europe. My wife is Danish (a little bit further north) and a small conflab confirmed that, yes, this is the way to make german cabbage.
    Also, I personally think a ton of butter can only be a good thing but I ain’t no beanpole…
    Also, I neglected to put salt and pepper into the ingredients, which is kind of obvious really.
    At Christmas, the Danes have a fantastic Chrimbo dinner which includes red cabbage. It is truly fantastic and whilst it takes a couple of days cooking, it is well worth it. A little nearer the festive season and with Sesnsi’s nod, I will post a recipe.

  3. This, guys, is a classic French method called a l’etuvée, not braising.

    Braised cabbage is best cut into quarters, the stalk – not heart – can be left to stop it falling apart (remove before serving or just leave them – your call), and slowly braised in a light vegetable stock until tender. A little salt, plenty of black pepper, a good knob of butter and a scattering of juniper berries are good too. Or skip the butter and cover with a layer of bacon rashers.

    I, personally, would skip the preliminary frying in this case (it’s not always necessary, and inconveniently-shaped food, like a pheasant, is a bugger to fry off anyway).

    Note: in any dish, add freshly-ground black pepper at the end, or it’s flavour will be lost during cooking.

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