Braised Cabbage with Creamy Spicy Mustard Sauce

By: Matt Armendariz

Looking back, I think cabbage got a bum deal in the vegetable world when I was growing up. It only showed up during summer picnics in the form of coleslaw, sometimes in my mother’s caldo, a Mexican soup, and during St. Patrick’s Day meals.I wanted to change this by creating a dish that’s worthy of cabbage as the star, something that can be enjoyed all year long.

This braised cabbage takes all the spices of traditional Corned Beef & Cabbage, but dresses them up with a Creamy Spicy Mustard Sauce; it’s a fantastic main dish, suitable for my vegetarian friends, and so completely satisfying. Braising isn’t only for meat – you’ll be surprised with the silky and savory results you can get from slow braising vegetables.

Braised Cabbage with Creamy Spicy Mustard Sauce

Serves 6

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 head green cabbage, cut into 6 equal wedges

2 cups vegetable or chicken broth

4 whole juniper berries

4 whole allspice berries

2 whole black peppercorns

1 Tbsp mustard seeds, lightly crushed

1 Tbsp fresh dill, minced

2 fresh thyme sprigs

2 bay leaves

2 garlic cloves, lightly crushed

Salt and pepper to taste

Creamy spicy mustard sauce:

3 Tbsp unsalted butter

3 Tbsp shallots, minced

1/3 cup dry white wine

1/4 cup braising liquid, strained

2 1/2 Tbsp stone ground mustard

2/3 cup heavy cream

Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Place oil in a skillet on medium-high heat.

Sear cabbage wedges on each side for 3 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from skillet and place in a large, shallow baking dish. Season with salt and pepper.

Add the broth, juniper berries, all spice berries, peppercorns, mustard seeds, dill, thyme, bay leaves, and garlic to the skillet and bring up to a boil.

Once the mixture has come to a boil, reduce the heat and allow the mixture to simmer for 5 minutes.

Pour the broth mixture over the seared cabbage, cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes or until the cabbage is fork tender.

For the mustard sauce, using the same skillet, melt the butter on medium-high heat.

Add the shallots to the skillet and sauté for 2-3 minutes.

Deglaze the pan with the wine and cook down until the pan is almost dry.

Stir in the strained braising liquid and the spicy mustard and allow to simmer for 3 minutes, or until the sauce thickens slightly.

Stir in the heavy cream and simmer until the sauce reduces by about half. Season with salt and pepper.

Pour the sauce over the wedges of braised cabbage and serve.

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