Most people are familiar with the time-honored tradition of dining on black eyed peas and cabbage on the first of the year. The peas, they say, will bring luck your way, while the cabbage offers fortune and wealth. While I don’t fancy myself a superstitious person, in the spirit of the new year and being willing to welcome any tradition that wills a little good fortune our way, we’re gonna cook some cabbage!
This braised cabbage with beef and tomatoes is perfect on a cold day. It’s hearty enough to warm your belly, without leaving you feeling like you’re busting at the gut. It’s one of those meals that will be ready to eat in the time it takes to make the rice. Not only is it fast and filling, but it’s really easy on the wallet. On average, cabbage will run you about $0.35 - 0.50 per pound. Considering how far you can stretch one head, this veggie is super economical, versatile and one of my all time favorites!
For this dish, you'll need ground beef, green cabbage, diced tomatoes, yellow onion and garlic. I love to season this with salt & pepper, a little garlic powder and crushed red pepper. The addition of dried herbs adds another level of earthy, herbiness that I love! If you don't have individual dried basil or oregano, you can swap out with Italian seasoning or any of your favorite dried herbs.
In a large saucepan, on medium-high heat, add oil and sauté onions until translucent. Add chopped garlic, a pinch of salt and pepper and stir. Let the garlic cook for just a minute or two before adding in ground beef. I typically use 85/15 meat. It's lean, but still has good flavor and it doesn't put off a lot of fat, so I rarely need to drain it. Cook until no longer pink, then add in your diced tomatoes, with the juice. If I'm using canned tomatoes, I like to go with no salt or less salt added, so that I can control how salty it'll be. Personal preference!
After adding your tomatoes, add another pinch of salt and pepper, granulated garlic (or garlic powder), crushed red pepper and dried basil and oregano. Stir until everything is evenly incorporated. Add cabbage and lower to medium-low heat. The pot will be pretty full of cabbage at this point, but it cooks down in no time, so pop the lid on for a couple minutes, then slowly start stirring and incorporating the cabbage into the meat and tomato mixture. Continue cooking on medium-low, covered, for 25-30 minutes, stirring every few minutes. You can adjust the salt & pepper to your taste! Serve smothered over rice. And then go back for seconds!
Happy New Year from The Craft Chew!