Healthy, Sides, Vegan

Balsamic braised red cabbage with apples, onions, & molasses

December 5, 2011

Although intriguingly, strikingly beautiful and mysterious, cabbage can be intimidating. Why is it so heavy? Why is it so hard? Why is it so bitter? Why so serious? Cabbage is usually used to make coleslaw, or vigoron, a Nicaraguan type coleslaw served over yuca. But what if it’s braised….slowly…..sweetly? What does it turn into?

It turns into yumminess, that’s what. It’s kind of like a harsh person that you meet. It’s difficult to deal with at first, it even smells kinda weird, but once coaxed slowly with sweet flavorings and added fruits and vegetables, it turns soft, sweet, and melts in your mouth while still having a substantial, hearty texture.

Here’s we’re adding balsamic vinegar, apples, onions, molasses, and raisins. Unexpected flavors, but the texture and flavors of this dish are exquisite. The apples and onions cook down, and everything turns purple. It’s just delcious. And! It’s healthy and totally vegan… it for lunch, eat it for dinner, but don’t eat it for breakfast. Save it for other sweet times of the day.

Balsamic Braised Red Cabbage with Apples, Onions, and Molasses

Adapted from Martha Stewart


1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 medium onion, halved and thinly sliced

1 Gala or Fuji apple, halved, cored, and sliced

1 head red cabbage (2 pounds), cored, quartered, and thinly sliced

Coarse salt and ground pepper

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar + extra for serving

4 teaspoons brown sugar

4 teaspoons molasses

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup raisins, optional


In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and apple; cook, stirring, until onion softens, 4 to 6 minutes. Stir in red cabbage and season with coarse salt and ground pepper. Add balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, molasses, and water. Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until cabbage is tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Season with salt, pepper, and sugar. Sprinkle with raisins and season with extra balsamic vinegar and molasses, if you wish.

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