Eats, Shoots & Reads

Eats #22: Sticky, Tangy, Redness

Ingredients: 250g smoked streaky bacon, 1 tablespoon fennel seeds, 1 onion, 2 eating apples, red cabbage, 150ml balsamic vinegar, olive oil, sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, handful chopped parsley.

Difficulty: 2/5
Rating: 4/5

Firstly I’ll apologise for posting this review on a Wednesday, especially after my personal condemnation for not meeting deadlines – sorry. I had a good excuse this time though, which as you might of guessed, was moving house!

Chop the onion and bacon and fry in olive oil with the bashed fennel seeds. Once softened add the apple and cabbage and cook for a few minutes with the lid on then add the balsamic vinegar.

Cook on a slow heat for an hour stirring occasionally until the balsamic has reduced and the cabbage is sweet and sticky. Place in a serving bowl and add a knob of butter and a sprinkling of parsley – serve!


I’ve had braised cabbage before so I was intrigued to see how this recipe turned out. Personally I really like cabbage and think it goes really well with balsamic vinegar so I had high expectations.

The cabbage was soft and sticky and the balsamic turned it a deep purple colour and gave the dish a lovely sweet, tangy taste. The bacon crumbled up and you occasionally got a piece of meatiness with each bite that gave the dish an extra dimension… The apple on the other hand, although I’m sure a major part of this dish, disappeared and I couldn’t identify it in the dish.

Overall a nice, tasty side dish and a welcome addition to any meal but for me the hour and half to cook this dish isn’t worth the result! I’m sure the same could of been achieved in a hot wok, with a splash of balsamic, in a third of the time.

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