Our kitchen garden cook reveals her favourite recipes with savoy cabbage.
“Forget the pungent smell of over-boiled cabbage that filled the air of your school dining room; the delightfully sweet Savoy cabbage is, at its best, a delightful accompaniment to any meal. The spaghetti recipe below is one of my all-time favourites and the pangrattato is worth remembering to add texture to other dishes, such as salads and fish”
Smoked-haddock and Savoy-cabbage spaghetti with pancetta and lemon pangrattato
300g smoked haddock,
skinned and cut into 1in chunks
100g pancetta, diced
Half a Savoy cabbage, shredded
150g frozen peas
100g Parmesan, grated
3 free-range eggs
2 cloves garlic, crushed
For the pangrattato
150g fresh sourdough breadcrumbs
A handful fresh parsley
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 lemon (zest of)
Fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. Add a splash of olive oil and the spaghetti and cook until al dente. Meanwhile, take a large frying pan and add a splash of olive oil, then the pieces of smoked haddock and pancetta, frying them until they’re cooked through and the pancetta is crispy, before removing and setting aside. Add the shredded Savoy cabbage to the same pan and cook until almost soft.
Return the pancetta and fish to the pan, add the peas and heat through, mixing everything gently together. In a separate bowl, mix the beaten eggs and grated cheese together with a fork and add a little pepper.
For the pangrattato, put all the ingredients in a processor and blitz until they resemble coarse breadcrumbs. Melt a little butter in a frying pan and then add the breadcrumbs and fry until gently browned.
Add a few tablespoons of the pasta water to the fish and Savoy cabbage before draining the spaghetti and then add the spaghetti to the fish and cabbage. Tip in the beaten-egg-and-cheese mixture and combine everything well, lifting the spaghetti up and putting it down again so there aren’t any unflavoured pockets.
To serve, ensure everything is heated through and then divide between plates. Scatter the pangrattato over them and add a squeeze of lemon.
Make a tomato-and-basil sauce by frying up an onion, 2 cloves of crushed garlic, a handful of fresh basil, a tablespoon of pesto, a splash of red wine and 3 tins of tomatoes. Cook well and add seasoning. In a separate pan, fry an onion in a splash of olive oil and add 500g minced beef. Add a squeeze of tomato ketchup, a splash of beef stock, a splash of red wine, a handful of freshly chopped herbs and seasoning. Blanch about 15 leaves from the Savoy cabbage in boiling, salted water. Drain them and then place a large spoonful of mincemeat into the centre before rolling up neatly, folding the sides in to enclose. Arrange them in a buttered ovenproof dish. Pour the tomato sauce over them. Scatter grated mozzarella and Parmesan over the top and cook in a moderate oven for 20 minutes.
Roasted cabbage wedges
Cut a Savoy cabbage into quarters and cook in a deep frying pan with a little butter and crushed garlic. Once gently browned, pour 500ml chicken stock over them and simmer for about 20 minutes. Serve with roast pork.