We’ve been into cabbage lately. It’s one of those veggies that help boost the liver’s ability to detox, lower cholesterol, and supply your body with loads of antioxidants. Components in cabbage are also showed to prevent cancers including colon, bladder, breast, and prostate cancers.
Polyphenols, a type of antioxidant, are abundant in cabbage. Even the not-so-interesting white cabbage is impressive. Red cabbage provides another type of antioxidant called anthocyanin, which also helps lower inflammation.
I love cabbage in salads. When I have fresh cabbage, I shred and add a handful to salad greens. I also like to mix it cucumber, ginger, and sesame seeds to make Asian-flavored salad.
My mom makes a traditional Middle Eastern stuffed cabbage, but that dish is a feast on its own!
Facts About Preparing and Cooking Cabbage
The nutrients in cabbage are sensitive to the cooking method. I thought these were important facts to share to help you get the most of this veggie:
- After you shred or cut cabbage, wait 10-15 minutes before you eat it or cook it. This time is needed to activate the enzymes that give cabbage its anti-cancer benefit.
- Cut and wash cabbage right before using it to preserve its vitamin C content. While commercial shredded cabbage is convenient (I’m guilty of using it too sometimes), the nutrient profile is not the same.
- Microwaving cabbage for 2 minutes destroys those cancer-preventing enzymes. Steaming preserves more of those enzymes as it takes 7 minutes before any damage starts to happen.
- If you boil cabbage and discard the water, you lose the nutrients (I’m sure you knew that). Avoid cooking in a large amount of water.
- Lightly sauteing the cabbage is the best way to preserve and maintain its nutrients. This is the method I used in my recipe.
Zesty Sauteed Cabbage
This dish is colorful, delicious, and simple. The addition of cilantro, ginger, and apple cider vinegar makes it zesty and boost detoxification. Make it with grilled chicken or fish for a complete meal.
- ½ head green cabbage
- ½ head red cabbage
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 inch fresh ginger root, peeled and chopped
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Remove the outer leaves from each cabbage. Cut each one in half.
- Place the half cabbage on a cutting board flat side down. Using a large knife, shred into about 1 inch pieces. Wash with cold water. Let is sit for 10 minutes.
- In a large pot, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil on medium heat.
- Add ginger and saute for 1 minutes.
- Toss in the cabbage and apple cider vinegar. Cover and let it cook for 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add fresh cilantro and sesame seeds. The cabbage will be slightly crunchy but that's on purpose to preserve its health benefits
Do you cook cabbage often? How do you like it to prepare it?