You may well be envisioning a vegetable that’s green—or perhaps red. Shape? Round, of course! Now, picture taking a bite of this cabbage, freshly harvested from our field. You’re probably thinking, “No way! I need to cook my cabbage.” If so, we’d like to introduce you to a different kind of cabbage, a type that’s:
A white variety
Pointy in shape
In fact, this pointed cabbage is sweet enough in flavor to also be called “sugarloaf” or “sweetheart cabbage.” Seriously!
Now, if you’re wondering if we’ve planted pointed white cabbage at The Chef’s Garden before, the answer is “no.” At least not in a really long time (Farmer Lee Jones does have a faint memory of planting it many decades ago).
As the title notes, though, we’re planting differently this year. Or, more accurately, we’re planting even more differently this year than in years past. The reality is that we are always experimenting, always trying to provide fresh vegetables that provide uniquely delicious flavor and nutrition—always wanting to gift our customers with an element of wonderous surprise and delight. Think of that as one of our bonus ingredients!
Because of the changes in the world today, we’re now planting for our treasured chefs and home cooks alike, the latter of whom want more heft and volume in their home delivery boxes to feed their families. That’s why, for example, we planted sweet corn for the first time in about 35 years—and we believe that our customers will really love our pointed cabbage.
Why the pointed cabbage? “Well, for one thing, it’s beautiful,” Chef Jamie Simpson says. “It’s delicious—and a bit different while also being quite relatable. People can use this cabbage in ways they always have, but it can also be eaten raw, something I wouldn’t suggest with other varieties. It’s much sweeter and more tender.”
Jamie remembers a pointed white cabbage recipe served at Nashville’s The Butcher and Bee, one where the chef charred it very hard on a very hot grill and then removed the cabbage. “It wasn’t actually cooked,” Jamie says, “but it was blackened on the cut side, and then dressed as a Caesar salad. It was so unexpected, yet so wonderful. This chef allowed the ingredient to shine while also providing comfort and nostalgia, a concept that anyone could get behind.”
Jamie will be sharing cabbage recipes of his own in the months to come. Plus, he and his team intend to preserve some of this unique pointed cabbage this fall, as well. Because it’s one of the most easily digestible kinds of cabbage available today, plenty of possibilities exist.
Health Benefits of Cabbage
“Cabbage is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin C and vitamin B6. It is also a very good source of manganese, dietary fiber, potassium, vitamin B1, folate and copper. Additionally, cabbage is a good source of choline, phosphorus, vitamin B2, magnesium, calcium, selenium, iron, pantothenic acid, protein and niacin.” (World’s Healthiest Foods)
As Healthline.com notes, cabbage is low in calories and fat, and just one cup of raw green cabbage contains a gram of protein, two grams of fiber, and:
Vitamin K: 85% of the recommended daily allowance
Vitamin C: 54% of the recommended daily allowance
Just one cup of red cabbage, meanwhile, contains about 85% of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C—about the same as what you can get in a small orange. Studies have shown how including cabbage as a part of a healthy diet may help fight against cancer, heart disease, inflammation and more, lowering cholesterol levels and blood pressure.
Stay tuned for more information about the health benefits of cabbage from the farm’s R&D department. Results are showing that our cabbage is a true nutritional powerhouse.
Food Trends 2020: Comfort Foods
According to Insider.com, one of the food trends that we can expect to see “everywhere in 2020” is the use of “healthy substitutes for comfort foods like cauliflower pizza.” Pointed cabbage pizza, anyone? Jamie, get busy!
Forbes.com, meanwhile, shares how people are gravitating towards comfort foods, with many of them “opting for plant-based alternatives instead.” In fact, the numbers of consumers who are seeking healthy fruits and vegetables are about the same as those who share a craving for comfort foods—so, delicious cabbage recipes can fit both bills.
Another food trend being noted? Quarantine and cooking fatigue, where people are looking for “simpler and easier options.” To help, here are streamlined ways to enjoy fresh vegetables, overall, provided by Chef Jamie.
Now Farmer Lee Reminisces
As we’d mentioned, The Chef’s Garden team hasn’t grown cabbage for years. “But,” Lee says, “if there’s a year that cries out for comfort food, it’s this one. And, as the season for tomatoes, peppers, corn, beans, and peas is transitioning into fall, we’re focusing on cabbage, kale, radishes, beets, potatoes, and carrots. Foods that can handle more cold temperatures.”
He recalls how, as a youngster, he’d have the job of picking up harvested cabbages. He’d stand in the middle of the field, with four rows on one side, and four on the other. As they were harvested, they were placed in the center—and it was Lee’s job to collect them and put them in bins.
“In my memory,” he says,” the days of picking cabbage were always wet. They were always cold. Now that couldn’t literally be true, but there were plenty of days when I’d take along two pairs of gloves. I’d wear one and keep the other on the manifold of our tractor to keep them warm. Steam would rise from them as they were heated up. When my hands got too cold, I’d switch to the other pair.”
Then, his mother would make pigs in the blanket with hamburger, rice, and onion wrapped in the freshest of cabbage.
“This is a vegetable,” Lee adds, “that signals the changing of the seasons. It’s one that welcomes in cooler nights of September, a signal that it’s time for autumn leaves to begin to change hues.”
Here are varieties of delicious and nutritious cabbage to choose from at The Chef’s Garden.