I usually grow 15-20 red cabbages (I admit, primarily for the beautiful color) every summer in my vegetable garden, with most of them gifted to friends before I even think about using one of the cabbages myself. So, with the Autumnal Equinox occurring this week, I thought it made sense to finally have a cabbage dinner, on the last night of summer.
This was the second time I've made this Suzanne Goin recipe for Sausage with Mustardy Fried Potatoes and Braised Cabbage. This time, however, I substituted Chicken-Apple Sausage for the Bratwurst used the original recipe. It's your call on what type of sausage to use, but I do believe the Bratwurst wins...
I suggest making the Citrus-Spiced Red Cabbage a day or two ahead if possible; just to reduce time spent in the kitchen the day of finishing and serving. A hearty meal for 4 persons.
Sausage with Mustardy Fried Potatoes and Citrus-Spiced Cabbage
• recipe by Suzanne Goin via Food & Wine Magazine, recipe adapted
• 1/8 cup diced shallots
• 1/8 cup red wine vinegar
• 1/8 cup whole-grain mustard
• 1/8 cup Dijon mustard
• 3-ounces (3/8 cup) plus 2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
• Kosher salt
• Freshly ground pepper
• 1 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes
• 6 bratwursts
• 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
• 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
• Citrus-Spiced Red Cabbage (recipe follows)
• 1 bunch of watercress, thick stems discarded (or a handful of arugula)
1. In a small bowl, combine the shallots and vinegar and let stand for 5 minutes; stir in both mustards. Whisk in 3-ounces (3/8 cup) of the oil and season the vinaigrette with salt and pepper. Reserve.
2. In a pot of salted, boiling water, cook the potatoes until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain and let cool slightly, then remove the skins. Break potatoes into chunks.
3. Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Grill the bratwursts over moderate heat, turning until heated through and cooked, 10 to 15 minutes.
4. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Add the potatoes and thyme and season with salt and pepper. Cook over moderately high heat, turning with a thin metal spatula until golden and crisp. Remove the pan from the heat and add 1/2 cup of the vinaigrette plus the parsley. Season with salt and pepper and toss to evenly coat.
5. Arrange half of the Citrus-Spiced Red Cabbage on a serving platter. Scatter the potatoes and three-fourths of the watercress (or arugula) over the cabbage. Top with half of the Bratwursts. Repeat with the remaining cabbage, watercress/arugula and bratwursts.
Citrus-Spiced Red Cabbage
• One 1-pound red cabbage-halved, cored and sliced 1/8-inch thick
• 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
• 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
• 1/3 cup sugar
• 1/4 cup unsalted butter
• 1 large onion, thinly sliced
• 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
• 1 árbol chile with seeds, crumbled (I used a big pinch of red pepper flakes)
• 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
• Kosher salt
• Freshly ground pepper
• 1 1/2 cups dry red wine
• 1/2 cup port
1. In a large bowl, combine the cabbage, lemon juice and orange juice. Let cabbage stand at room temperature for 1 hour, tossing occasionally.
2. Set a large enameled, cast-iron casserole over moderate heat for 1 minute. Add the sugar in an even layer and cook, without stirring, until melted and starting to caramelize. Stir in the butter. Add the onion, thyme, chile, allspice, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook over moderate heat, stirring often, until the onion is lightly caramelized. Stir in the wine and port and cook over moderately high heat until the liquid is reduced to 2/3 up. Add the cabbage and any accumulated juices and 1 teaspoon of salt. Cook over moderate heat, stirring often, until the cabbage is tender and glazed, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
TAKE a LOOK:
September and figs. I wish the season weren't so brief. I bought my first carton of fresh figs yesterday. My two "Little Miss Figgy" plants on my patio are still too young to produce fruit. I decided that baking a breakfast cake with my purchased figs, to eat along with my cappuccino in the morning, was the way to go.
And figs are really good for you! (read this)... Another reason to go out and buy some figs.!
And, right before I photographed the Fig & Almond Breakfast Cake, a neighbor stopped by with fresh raspberries that he picked from the bushes in his yard. Perfect timing!
• recipe from Beyond the Plate
• 2 1/2 ounces blanched almond meal
• 2 1/2 ounces unbleached, all-purpose flour
• Pinch of salt
• 1 teaspoon baking powder
• 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
• 3 ounces sugar
• 1 tablespoon rum
• 2 large eggs
• several (I used about 5-6) ripe figs, quartered
• Confectioners' sugar and fresh figs for finishing, if desired
1. Preheat oven to 375˚F.
2. Line the base of an 8 1/2 to 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper, then tighten the springform ring to keep the parchment in place; trim excess paper.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the almond meal, flour, salt and baking powder; set aside.
4. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugar at medium speed, until pale and fluffy. Turn mixer to low and add the rum, dry ingredients and eggs. Increase the speed to medium and beat for 3-4 minutes. The batter should be smooth and all the ingredients are incorporated.
5. Turn the cake batter into the prepared springform pan using a spatula to spread the thick mixture evenly. Arrange the fig quarters over the top of the batter. Place the pan on the middle rack of the oven and bake for approximately 45 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.
6. Run a knife around the perimeter of the cake before releasing the ring; allow to cool for about 15 minutes. Dust with confectioners' sugar and decorate with additional fresh figs if desired.
TAKE a LOOK:
There's an obvious shift this week to how and what I'm making for our dinner. Over the past couple of months, every meal consisted largely of produce from the vegetable garden. With this Mexican Tortilla Casserole, the only home-grown ingredient was the lone cherry tomato on the top. My garden still boasts kale, some beans, and an occasional cucumber... and, don't let me forget red cabbage! My husband also planted watermelon radishes and a second crop of lettuces; but for the most part, it's coming to an end.
As much as I miss my garden vegetables when I no longer have them, I am always ready for cool weather meals that simmer on my stove throughout the day. Desserts that consist of stone fruit and berries (most likely tarts and galettes) are replaced by apples, pears, and a good amount of chocolate... I love fall!
This Mexican Tortilla Casserole is simple and quick to assemble. And, feel free to swap out ingredients to your liking.