One whole cabbage may seem like a lot but I freeze any extra portions. Alternatively if you’re just making this for a small number of people see if you can buy half or a quarter from the green-grocer.
1 red cabbage.
1 red onion. (Or any onion if you don’t have a red one).
Beef drippings, lard, goose-fat or clarified butter.
Apple cider vinegar or balsamic vinegar.
Salt & pepper.
Cut the cabbage into quarters. With a mandolin grate the cabbage into thin stripes – it goes surprisingly quickly. If you have a food processor use that – it will go even quicker but you may have more washing-up.
In a large pot heat up either the drippings, lard, goose far or clarified butter and fry the red onions. You can use butter – but it will burn quicker so keep the temperature lower if using butter. Start adding the shredded red cabbage. Peel the apples and cut them into small pieces. Stir into the mixture. Add a good dash of the vinegar. Go easy – taste it to see if the level of tanginess is to your liking. Add 1-2 TBS. of dark brown muscovado sugar. Add the star anise and cloves.
Add around 1 cm of water to the bottom of the pot so that the bottom doesn’t burn. The purpose is not to drown the red cabbage in water – rather to prevent the bottom from burning. Place a lid on top and leave to stew on a medium heat for 30-40 minutes. Any longer and the colour will begin to drain out of the cabbage and it will taste more washed out.