Braised red cabbage and apple is a fantastic side dish for lowering carbs! This one is made with wine, butter, onions, bay leaf and many apples.
This Braised red cabbage and apple side dish is low carb, tasty and easy to make; its overall flavour is sweet and sour, and let’s face it… it doesn’t hurt the eyes to look at it. I’ve used lean meat on top, chicken breast, with a Spanish salsa verde, but it could easily be a pork tenderloin.
The main idea is the reversed braised apple and red cabbage side dish. I always tend to add rice, potato or pasta to my plates… But lately, I’ve been trying to cut it out, and one of the best ways I’ve found was cabbage. I believe cabbage is more filling than most veggies and goes perfectly with meat.
Plus, you can easily change the aromas, for example, a caraway and cider vinegar flavoured cabbage for a german style cabbage (check my recipe), or a simple thyme, garlic, braised with tomatoes and olive oil for a Mediterranean flavour, etc. I would call this one a french version; I’ve added white wine, butter, onions and lots of apples with laurel leaves. So cabbage is quite versatile and polyvalent.
Reverse Braising technique
Let’s talk braising a minute… Braising usually starts by frying and then cooking slowly in liquid. For my cabbage, I do it the reverse way; I start with a moist bath and then, in the end, finish the cabbage at high heat with a touch of butter to give its taste. In other words, it’s kind of a reverse braising I do. The result is fantastic!
I believe it helps control the liquid amount to perfection, especially if you want a dry cabbage result; cook it until all the liquid evaporates. Then, add a touch of butter and fry to give it this braised taste. Most recipes I see out there have extra sugar… I’ve lightened things up a little for this version by cutting on the butter and sugar. There is no sugar whatsoever in there except in the apples themselves.
What to Serve it with…
A lovely chicken breast simply oven baked with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper. Just because… sometimes, simple is better. The mighty Spanish salsa verde, which tops the chicken, is the perfect kick for this dish, a garlicky-parsley olive oil concoction. Since the garlic isn’t cooked, use this sauce in small amounts to bring the whole dish to another level. For the ones that love bold tastes, you can add some extra Salsa verde, and reserve some on the table.
Let’s make this healthy and colourful low-carb dish!
Braised red cabbage and apple
- 1 red cabbage (finely sliced)
- 2 apples (cut into small cubes)
- 1 small onion (finely sliced)
- 30 g butter
- 50 ml white wine
- laurel leave
- salt and pepper
Chicken breast and salsa verde
- 2 chicken breast
- 100 ml olive oil
- 2 tbsp parsley
- 1 garlic clove
- salt and pepper
- Start with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper on the chicken breast, cook in the oven at 180°C (350) for 25 minutes.
- Add the onions, apples, laurel leaf, and half the butter in a large pan, and cook for a minute at high heat (soften them up).
- Add the cabbage on top, don’t mix, plus the wine, salt and pepper, and cook at medium-low heat, covered, for 10 minutes.
- Uncover the cabbage and let it cook at medium-high heat until the liquid is almost all gone (about 5 minutes).
- Add the other half of the butter and cook at high heat for a minute or two.
- Add the parsley, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper in the mortar or small blender, and mix until a green paste.
- Serve half a pre-cut chicken breast on a bed of red cabbage and top with a small amount of salsa verde.