Germans love their cabbage, and they honestly have one of the best ways to prepare the red cabbage. My first experience with red cabbage was to see it in the mixed salad bar when we would go to a restaurant when I was a child. Needless to say I wasn't impressed. Once I lived in Germany I was introduced to the wonderful side dish of "Rotkraut", which is a more sweet/sour flavor than your more typical Sauerkraut which is made from white cabbage (which is really green, so don't ask me why they call it white). Now this recipe is fairly simple to do but it does take a bit of time to prepare especially with a 1 hour cooking time, but the results are worth waiting for.
For this side dish you will need the following ingredients:
So to start off with you will want to melt the butter and add the brown sugar. Stir the butter and brown sugar until the sugar caramelizes. Add in the apple and continue stirring until the apple pieces are slightly browned. Next add in the cabbage, and stir it around so that it is warmed throughout. Now add in the red wine, apple juice, and vinegar, and some broth. Stir together well and add in the cloves, and laurel leaves.
- 1 head of red cabbage (~1kg) chopped
- 50g butter
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 small apple chopped
- 4 whole cloves
- 2 laurel leaves
- 100 ml red wine
- 100 ml apple juice
- some broth
- 1 dash red wine vinegar
Let this cook over a medium heat for about an hour stirring regularly and when needed adding more apple juice or red wine. After cooking for an hour, salt and pepper to taste. Also remove the laurel leaves, and cloves from the kraut before serving.
Rotkraut goes well with beef main courses like Rouladen, or beef roasts.
Pro-tip: Make the rotkraut a day or two before your meal and freeze it. Then warm it back up to serve. For some reason Rotkraut is always better re-warmed.