I heard cabbage had a bad rap: Braising a Chinese/Napa Cabbage
I reckon there is some truth to Cabbage’s bad rap. Taking that thought a bit further, there are so many delicacies made with cabbage: Kimchi, Sauerkraut, Red Cabbage Slaw, Caldo Verde, Niños Envueltos, Shredded Brussel Sprouts Salad for example. Nevertheless, experimenting with an ingredient that can tend to smell off when it is first warmed up and you are learning to cook can be deterring.
It is better to leave the smell thought aside and discover that there is more weight in the myth than what really happens in a cabbag-ed up kitchen.
Braised Chinese/Napa Cabbage
1 Chinese/Napa Cabbage
3 cm piece of ginger, peeled and diced small
2 spring onions finely chopped
100 ml of Shao Xing (Chinese rice wine)
1 Tbsp sea salt
1 Tbsp brown sugar (optional)
1 Tbsp Light Soy sauce
1 Tbsp Dark Soy sauce
Rinse the outside of the whole cabbage under cold water and pat it dry. Cut the cabbage in thick rings crosswise and the quarter each cabbage disk. You should have big chunks of cabbage once you are done cutting. Warm up a wok over high heat. Once the wok is hot add a good trickle of peanut oil. It will bubble up nicely if the wok is heated up well. Add the cabbage and stir it around to flash fry it. Once all the cut cabbage leaves are coated with the hot peanut oil, add all the rest of the ingredients and cover with a lid and finish braising. Keep the high heat throughout cooking, regulating it so that the cabbage does not burn. Cook until the outer sides of the cabbage pieces are soft and the thinker centres are still crisp.
I served it in the pictures above with whole prawns flash steamed in vegetable broth and Shao Xing with a touch of soy sauce added at the end.