My father-in-law has lost a considerable amount of weight by eating a raw cabbage salad prior to his meals. Thank goodness he has become quite a cabbage-fan because I couldn’t believe I served him a main dish that incorporated cabbage- an entire head of cabbage! 🙂
The cabbage in this sauce is shredded and becomes completely unrecognizable in the creamy sauce. The crème fraiche added a lovely tanginess and the pumpernickel bread crumbs added a fabulous contrasting texture. We ate it on Thanksgiving Eve with a green salad. It was a delicious dish!
This recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Mike Lata. I used black forest bacon, mezzi rigatoni, and green cabbage instead of Savoy. I also reduced the crushed red pepper and increased the garlic. We grated additional Parmigiano-Reggiano over the top of each serving at the table. Yum!
Yield: Serves 4 to 6
- 8 ounces pumpernickel bread (with crusts), torn into pieces (3 cups)
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- coarse salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 4 ounces thick-cut bacon, cut into 1/4-inch dice (I used black forest bacon)
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 head of Savoy or green cabbage (1 1/2 pounds), shredded (I used a food processor)
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 pound rigatoni or mezzi rigatoni
- 1/2 cup crème fraîche
- 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for serving
- In a food processor, pulse the bread until coarse crumbs form. In a skillet, melt the butter in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.
- Add the breadcrumbs and cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 8 minutes. Season with salt.
- In a large straight-sided skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the bacon and cook over moderate heat until crisp; transfer to paper towels to drain.
- Add the onion, garlic and crushed red pepper to the skillet and cook until the onion is softened, about 2 minutes. Add the cabbage and stock and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring, until almost all of the stock has evaporated, 8 to 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a large saucepan of salted boiling water, cook the pasta until al dente. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the pasta water.
- Toss the pasta with the cabbage.
- Stir in the crème fraîche, the 1/2 cup of cheese and, if necessary, the reserved pasta water; season with salt and black pepper.
- Transfer the pasta to bowls and garnish with the breadcrumbs, bacon and black pepper. Serve with additional cheese on the side.
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Such an unusual recipe Josette!
Cabbage is supposed to be good for weight loss and full of fiber!
I get a LOT of cabbage- and varieties of cabbage in my CSA share. I’m becoming a fan!
I had no idea cabbage could be such a weight loss tool! Yes, I have seen it in the cabbage soup weight-watchers diet, but didn’t know it had added benefits beyond just eating a soup of it! Although I’m not a fan of dark breads, I can see sourdough being a great substitute! I’m marking this one down to explore, thank you!
Sourdough would be a wonderful substitute! Please let me know if you try it. 🙂
This does sound good. I’m a big fan of cabbage and if you can find a way to combine it with the great love of my life, pasta, I’m all for it. 🙂
I have a greater appreciation for just about anything when it is transformed into a pasta dish! 🙂 Thanks, John.
Oh this sounds so interesting; I’ve never had cabbage and pasta together, unless you count Asian salads. And the addition of breadcrumbs, bacon, and cream makes it sound so German. I like the idea of cabbage salad diet too; I usually make sauerkraut when I buy a large cabbage head, but eating a little every day would take care of the issue of “what to do with a huge cabbage in under a week” quite as efficiently.
The recipe is actually from a chef with a Polish background! I have also been roasting cabbage with bacon and then serving it over pasta as well. Cabbage actually pairs nicely with pasta! 🙂
I’m loving the sound of this recipe! Such wonderful flavors all together must be delicious – I’m pinning this to try this winter! 🙂
It did really have such a wintry feel. Please give it a try!