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Sesame-Braised Cabbage with Leeks

Updated April 14, 2016

Editor's Note: This Sesame-Braised Cabbage with Leeks makes for a great side dish on your diner table. With only a few ingredients, cabbage and leeks are transformed into a flavorful dish that's full of nutrients. The hint of sesame makes this a perfect vegetable side dish to accompany any Asian-inspired meal, but it's also a great way to jazz things up with a simple chicken dinner, as well. It could even be the main course for vegetarian meals - add a little browned tofu or tempeh for some protein!
Gentle and soothing, this lovely dish is more complex and satisfying than you might expect.

Serves4 servings

Cooking MethodBraising

CostInexpensive

Easy

Total Timeunder 1 hour

One Pot MealYes

OccasionCasual Dinner Party

Recipe CourseMain Course, Side Dish

Dietary ConsiderationVegetarian

MealDinner

MoodBlue

Taste and TextureLight, Nutty, Savory

Type of DishVegetable

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 cups sliced leeks (whites and as much of the greens as feasible)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (possibly more)
  • 4 cups cut green cabbage (1-inch “squares”)
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Chinese-style dark sesame oil
  • Toasted sesame seeds

Instructions

Melt the butter in a Dutch oven or large, deep skillet over medium heat. Add the leeks and salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes, or until very tender.

Add the cabbage and stir to combine. Add 2 tablespoons water, cover, reduce the heat at low, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage is tender, about 20 minutes.

Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper and a pinch more salt if needed. Server hot or warm, drizzled with a tiny bit of dark sesame oil and topped with a generous sprinkling of lightly toasted sesame seeds.

 

Notes

Leeks are easy to clean. Rinse the outsides to get rid of any mud, then slice the white and light green parts and place them in a big bowl of water. Swish around vigorously, then lift out the leeks with your hands or a slotted spoon, leaving the dirt in the bottom of the bowl of water.

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I loved the subtle flavors of the leeks and cabbage. Because you cook the cabbage on low heat it is not overcooked. I did not have to add additional salt. I did add a dollop of sour cream as I couldn't resist. My Lithuanian mother always added a little to cabbage. But it didn't need it at all. But I had to try it. Delicious!

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