Some people tend to get stuck on recipes. If they don't have everything the recipe calls for, they'll put it away until they've made a run to the grocery store. Me, I'm a bit of a player (well, at least when it comes to recipes and board games). If a soup recipe calls for sausage and I'm out, I'll add in some smoked paprika instead and make it into something vegetarian.
When I spotted this warm cabbage salad recipe on 101 Cookbooks (an always inspiring website for vegetarian recipes), I quickly realized that I was out of sunflower seeds, golden raisins and Parmesan. No worries, because I did have some unsalted roasted peanuts and a bag of Craisins. I also had dried rosemary instead of the fresh stuff. When I looked closer at the recipe, I realized the sunflower seeds needed to be candied, but since I was already feeling a bit sugared-out due to all of the fun-sized Halloween candy laying about, I left my peanuts alone. There was already balsamic and dried cranberries in my recipe to take care of the sweet factor. Looking to play a bit more with this warm salad? I think some chopped apples would be an excellent addition!
Maybe the salad wasn't as delicious as the original version, but I thought it was tasty and healthy - not to mention easy to whip up as a quick side dish. It's perfect for fall and winter when your larder is heavy with root vegetables and cabbage. And a cabbage recipe with a slightly sweet and salty twist is always a welcome find.
Warm Cabbage Salad with Dried Cranberries & Peanuts
(adapted from 101 Cookbooks)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small red onion, sliced into thin half moons
3 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
1/2 large head of red cabbage, sliced thinly
large pinch salt & a good grind of pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup roasted peanuts (unsalted)
1 1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled
In a large skillet or pot, heat olive oil, onions and garlic together. Saute until soft. Add in cabbage, salt and pepper and stir about for a few minutes until the cabbage wilts slightly (about 3-5 minutes or so) without over-cooking it. Add in the rosemary, peanuts, cranberries and balsamic vinegar. Stir everything and remove from heat. Dump everything into a large serving dish and sprinkle with feta cheese. Taste and add more salt if necessary.