Easy Fried Cabbage with Pancetta.This is a perfect dish for the full in swing barbecue season. The lovely sweet earthiness of the cabbage is highlighted by honey and balanced with some crispy pancetta. The end result, a side dish that pairs well with any grilled meat, fish, or chicken. It is also a dish that stands on its own very well.
Selling you on this wonderful vegetable, cabbage!
What could I say to make you really love cabbage? Well how about this:
- It stores for a really long time in the fridge.
- A very versatile ingredient that you can eat raw or cook up in many different ways.
- It can be found almost anywhere.
- Last but not least, it just tastes so good, and is good for you!
Cabbage is more than a cabbage roll!
Thinking back years ago, when someone said cabbage, there were two reactions. One would be oh no, not stewed cabbage. The other, are you making cabbage rolls? That was my experience anyway. How about you, what is your cabbage story?
Well, today cabbage has a whole new persona, and many a great dish has made its way into lots of hearts in our evolving foodie world. Mine and Nicoletta's especially. Today is going to be a real treat because this recipe is super easy, with very few ingredients, and so quick to prepare! Come let's get into the kitchen and make this wonderful Easy Fried Cabbage with Pancetta!
Here are the ingredients to make this recipe:
- green cabbage
- cipolline onion
- extra virgin cold pressed olive oil
- salt and pepper
I bet you are thinking to yourself, "is that it?" and my answer is definitely a yes!
Prep, a good way to make your cooking go smooth and easy!
I am a person who loves organization. Even in my cooking, prep to me is a great way to organize your ingredients and execute the recipe flawlessly. That being said, here we go:
- Firstly, peel the outer leaves of the cabbage and discard. Cut the head of cabbage in half and place the flat side down. Core the hard part, then shred the cabbage by cutting into it in thin slices. Separate the slivers and place in a bowl.
- Secondly, slice up the cipolline onion into thin slices as you can see in the picture below.
- Thirdly, cut the outer surface of the pancetta all around, then cut it lengthwise into a ⅛ inch strip, followed by cutting it into ⅛ inch slivers.
- That is it, your prep is done!
Time to flavor the pan!
The key to this dish is to build some flavor in the pan before the cabbage goes in. This is how we rocked it:
- First you need to fry up the sliced pancetta. I drizzle just a bit of olive oil into a large deep sauté pan.
- Toss in the pancetta and turn the heat to a medium/high setting.
- Cook up the pancetta until it gets crispy, but not burnt. Turn off heat and take crispy pancetta out of the pan with a slotted spoon and place in a ramekin. Leave the oil in the pan, we are going to cook our onions and cabbage in that.
- Turn heat back onto a medium setting and throw in onions, season with a pinch of salt and pepper, stir. Let those sauté until soft and translucent, about 2 minutes. After, sprinkle in shredded cabbage and let that cook for about 5 minutes or until cabbage has a nice al dente texture. TIP: If you see it is getting too dry, add a few drops of water.
A few finishing touches to this Easy fried cabbage with pancetta
Now that our cabbge has softened a bit and has mingled nicely with the flavored oil and sweet onion, it time to finish this dish so we can taste it. Here we go:
- We want to enhance the sweetness of the cabbage, we do this by drizzling in some honey.
- Next we want to balance that sweetness with a little saltiness and pungent nature of the crispy pancetta. So, with that being said, toss the pancetta back in the pan with the cabbage and onions.
- Finally, some fresh chopped parsley to give a spark of color, and that my friends is it. This Easy fried cabbage with pancetta is ready to plate.
Presentation is important to me
As a matter of fact, I really like to present a dish so that it looks fantastic. Maybe it is the artist in me, whatever it is, I just like it that way. Nicoletta chose this beautiful platter that we got from a friend of mine, actually belonged to his parents. It is the perfect shape and color to really showcase this cabbage. Would you not agree?
Easy fried cabbage with Pancetta, mangia mangia!
This is always the best part. We get to taste the fruits of our labor. First of all, I have to say it has this lovely aroma of the sweet cabbage meets that salt cured pancetta. My first forkful reveals the lovely texture of the cabbage. Not too hard and not too soft, perfectly al dente. In the end, the honey really spiked the sweetness of the cabbage, and ever so subtly the pancetta comes in with flying colors to balance everything with some much needed saltiness.
I love this dish, Nicoletta and I ate it as a meal, however it would accompany so many things well. It is a win win dish in my books, and I hope you enjoyed making it as much as I did.
Thanks for sharing a moment in our kitchen with us, and that my friends is a wrap!
Easy fried cabbage with pancetta
Easy Fried Cabbage with Pancetta. This is a perfect dish for the full in swing barbecue season. The lovely sweet earthiness of the cabbage is highlighted by honey and balanced with some crispy pancetta. The end result, a side dish that pairs well with any grilled meat, fish, or chicken. It is also a dish that stands on its own very well.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 25 minutes
- Yield: serves 2-4 people 1x
- Category: side dish
- Method: stove top
- Cuisine: Mediterranean
- 1 small head of green cabbage
- 2 Tbsp evo oil
- 3-4 slices of pancetta, or bacon, slivered
- 1 small cipolline onion
- pinch of salt & pepper
- 1 tsp honey
- parsley, to sprinkle on top
- Shred the cabbage and slice the onion. Slice the pancetta lengthwise about ⅛" thick, then cut into ⅛" thin slivers.
- In a large heavy-bottomed skillet drizzle in olive oil, add sliced pancetta. Turn heat to a med/high and cook until crisp, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the pancetta, leaving the oil in the skillet.
- Add chopped onion to the skillet and increase heat to medium-high. Cook until translucent, about 2 minutes.
- Then, add cabbage. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until cabbage is just tender, about 5 minutes. You might need to add a tablespoon of water if it gets too dry.
- Add honey, stir, then toss in crispy pancetta to the cabbage and toss to combine. Cook about 1 minute to mingle. Top with chopped fresh parsley.
- Ready to serve.
This is a great dish to prepare on the barbecue. Whether you use a skillet straight on the grill, or on a side burner, either way it would work.
Bacon or guanciale would also work well instead of the pancetta.
Watch the seasoning, because the pancetta is quite salty, so little seasoning required.
When I am not cooking, I enjoy playing musical instruments, singing, writing. I have learned over the years to live in gratitude and enjoy the moment.