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Also Known as
A red or purplish cabbage that is more mild and sweet flavored than other cabbage. It has a round, solid head and is popular for adding color to salads and stir-fries. The leaves on the red cabbage are tougher than those on the green cabbage because of its longer maturity time. Red cabbage is available throughout the year.
How to Select
Red cabbage cubes
Cube Cabbage by cutting them into uniform strips. Line up the strips with your non-working hand and cut them into square pieces. As per the recipie, chop them into particular size of the cubes, (for example, "cut into ½-inch cubes").
When shopping for red cabbage, it is a good idea to choose those heads with the richest, reddest leaves, since the compounds that give red cabbage is rich flavor also provide its nutritional benefits. The leaves should show no evidence of damage or insect nibbles. Fresh cabbage will have a generous amount of wrapper (outer) leaves. Check the bottom of the cabbage to be sure the leaves are not beginning to separate from the stem, an indication of age. Culinary Uses
" Most often pickled, raw shredded red cabbage adds a striking taste to salads.
" When cooking with red or purple cabbage, be aware that the compound (anthocyanin) that gives the cabbage that beautiful color will also turn it blue when it is cooked along with any alkaline substance. Since tap water is often full of alkaline minerals such as lime, be sure to add about 1 teaspoon of acidic agent, such as lemon juice, vinegar, or wine, to the pot when using tap water. If your red cabbage begins to take on that blue tinge in any recipe, the addition of the acidic agent will usually bring back the original color.
" Use red or purple cabbage leaves to hold side dishes or salads on the plate for an attractive and colorful accent.
" Cabbage heads can be hollowed out and used as unique serving containers for cold dips and spreads. Red and purple ones make excellent centerpieces used as a container.
" Combine shredded red and white cabbage with fresh lemon juice, olive oil, and seasonings such as turmeric, cumin, coriander and black pepper.
" The color in red cabbage will have a tendency to run when it is cooked. The cabbage turns a purplish blue and turns other foods that it is cooked with to a reddish color. To prevent the red cabbage from discoloring, add lemon juice or vinegar to the cooking water. Approximately 1/2 tbsp. per cup of cooking water will be sufficientHow to Store
Keeping cabbage cold will keep it fresh and help it retain its nutritional content. Put the whole head in a plastic bag in the crisper of your refrigerator. If you need to store a partial head of cabbage, cover it tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate. But remember, the older it gets, the stronger the flavor and odour will be. Health Benefits
" Red cabbage and red beets are delicious, nutritious and low in calories.
" They are very rich in Vitamin C, a key antioxidant.
" For many years the juice of the red cabbage has been used as a very effective way to treat peptic ulcers.
" Red Cabbage is filled with antioxidant power more than green/white cabbage. This enables our systems to fight free radicals and clear up toxins, including potential carcinogens