I have a new favorite condiment: pickled purple cabbage! It’s a real dark horse in the world of toppings that I am obsessed with (does this count as a world? I think yes!). Cabbage is humble and unassuming, and cooking or pickling it gives it a rather pungent smell that makes it easy to overlook. But this pickled cabbage should not be overlooked.
The dark purple cabbage essence oozes out into the brine and turns everything (the cabbage, brine, my fingers and everything else it touches) an incredible, shocking fuchsia, which is almost enough reason to make this alone. But it also tastes great - bright and acidic, soft but still tender-crispy. If the pickley-ness is a bit too much you can give it a quick rinse for mellower cabbage, or eat it as is.
It makes pretty much any summery sandwich better (I will show you a couple of my favourites in couple upcoming posts), it makes a great vegetable base for tacos and it’s an excellent addition to a big chopped salad. It’s quick to prepare, ready in a few hours and even better over the next few days. I have been making it constantly.
quick pickled cabbage:
1 large purple cabbage
2 or 3 cloves of garlic smashed
1 shallot, finely sliced
3 tbs salt
1 tsp chili flakes
1 tsp whole cumin seeds
equal parts white vinegar and water (enough to fill jars and cover cabbage)
Finely shred cabbage; I like to use a mandoline on a very thin setting, but use a knife if you prefer. Toss cabbage with salt and seasonings.
Pack cabbage tightly into one or two large glass jars, depending on how much cabbage you have. Fill jars halfway with vinegar and top up with water. Make sure the cabbage is submerged.
After just a few hours, the cabbage is ready to go, but it gets softer and more-pickley as it sits in the fridge.