This dish is a low carb, tasty and easy to make, it’s overall flavor is sweet and sour and let’s face it… it doesn’t hurt the eyes to look at. I’ve used a lean meat on top, chicken breast, with a Spanish salsa verde, but it could easily be a pork tenderloin or else. The main idea here is the reversed braised apple and red cabbage side dish. I tend to always add rice, potato or pasta in my plates but lately, I’ve been trying to cut it out and one of the best way I’ve found was cabbage. Cabbage is somehow more filling than most veggies, I believe, and it just goes perfectly with any type of meat. Plus, you can easily change the aromatics in there, for example a caraway and cider vinegar flavored cabbage for a german style cabbage (check my recipe), or a simple thyme, garlic, braised with tomatoes and olive oil for a mediterranean flavor, etc. This one I would call it a french version, I’ve added white wine, butter, onions and lots of apples with a laurel leave. So cabbage is quite versatile, tastewise.
Let’s talk braising a minute… I know braising means to usually start by frying and then cooking slowly in a bit of liquid. For my cabbage, I do it the reversed way; I start by the 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 with cabbage. I believe it helps control the liquid amount to perfection, especially if you want a dry cabbage result, so you cook the cabbage until all the liquid evaporates, then add a touch of butter and fry to give it this braised taste. Most recipe I see out have extra sugar… For this version, I’ve lighten things up a little, by cutting on the butter and sugar. Actually there is no sugar whatsoever in there, except in the apples themselves.
The chicken breast is a simple, oven baked, with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper. Just because… sometimes, simple is better. The powerful Spanish salsa verde, which top 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, you’ll see it bring a whole dish to some other level, for the once that love bold tastes, you can add some extra salsa verde, but I suggest a touch only to begin with.
Let’s make this healthy and colorful low-carb dish!
Braised Apple-Red Cabbage with Chicken Breast and Spanish Salsa Verde
Makes 4 portions | Difficulty: easy | Preparation: 10 minutes | Coccion: 25 minutes
The braised cabbage
- 1 red cabbage sliced
- 2 apples (sweet ones) cut into small cubes
- 1 small onion finely slices
- 30g of butter
- 50ml of white wine
- 50ml of vegetable broth or water
- laurel leave
- salt and pepper (don’t be shy)
The chicken and salsa verde
- 2 chicken breast
- flat leave parsley (about 25 leaves)
- 1 garlic clove
- 100ml of olive oil + extra for the chicken breast
- salt and pepper
Preheat the oven at 180°C (350F)
- 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
- In a large pan, add the onions, apples, laurel leave and half the butter, cook for a minute at high heat (just to soften them up)
- Add the cabbage on top, don’t mix, plus the wine, water, salt and pepper, cook at medium-low heat, covered, for 10 minutes
- Uncover and mix the cabbage, let cook at medium high heat until no more liquids (about 5 minutes)
- When the liquid is gone add the other half of butter and cook at high heat for a minute or two.
- In the mortar or small blender, add the parsley, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper and mix until a green paste (not too long with the blender)
- Serve half a precut chicken breast on a bed of the red cabbage and top with a small amount of salsa verde