This easy Braised Savoy Cabbage is a delicious and healthy side for meat, egg and cheese dishes.
Verza Stufata or Braised Savoy Cabbage, is a popular Italian winter dish, usually served with sausage meat, pancetta, or alongside other meat dishes.
It is a traditional peasant dish, inexpensive and simple to make. Ingredients are first sautéed and then cooked on a low heat with a flavoursome stock, till the cabbage leaves are tender and the liquid has mostly reduced.
This recipe is a vegetarian version, but if you wish to add meat, add it after softening the garlic then sauté till brown before adding the cabbage.
Although this dish can be served straight away, the flavours develop further while resting. For best results prepare it a couple of hours in advance.
A little about savoy cabbage
Also known as cavolo verza in Italian, the savoy cabbage is the prettiest cabbage of them all.
It is large and round with large, loose emerald green outer leaves which are heavily textured and slightly frilled round the edges. Inside, the leaves are light green, paling to yellow and are more tender and crisp.
Savoy cabbage has a delicate flavour which is mild and earthy. When cooked, the leaves become tender and sweet.
It’s good for you! Savoy cabbage is high in fibre, vitamins A, C, K, B6 as well as being an excellent source of folate, potassium, manganese, thiamin, calcium, iron and magnesium.
The peak season for savoy cabbage runs from November through to April.
Select one with bright unblemished leaves which are firmly attached at the base.
An uncut savoy cabbage will keep in a dry cool place for up to two weeks.
- savoy cabbage
- olive oil
- vegetable broth (or beef/chicken broth)
- salt & pepper
How to cut savoy cabbage
Savoy cabbage is easier to cut in half than a green or red cabbage.
- Slice the savoy cabbage in half down the middle, and cut away the hard central core.
- Cut the leaves into thin strips around 1 inch wide.
Drizzle some good quality olive oil over the top and a grating of cheese (optional).
Store leftovers in a closed container in the fridge and keep for up to 3 days.
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Verza Stufata – Italian Braised Savoy Cabbage
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large garlic clove chopped small
- 1 savoy cabbage washed and patted dry
- 200 milliliters vegetable stock (1 cup) or beef/chicken stock
- ½ teaspoon salt to taste
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper freshly ground
- olive oil from drizzling (optional)
- parmesan cheese for grating
- Prepare the cabbage by slicing down the middle, cutting away the tough central core, the slicing the leaves into thin 1 inch strips.1 savoy cabbage
- In a large saucepan with a lid, heat the oil with garlic on low heat till the garlic softens.3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 large garlic clove
- Add sliced cabbage, turn the heat to medium and sauté for a couple of minutes in the garlic oil.
- Stir in a third of the stock and salt, then turn the heat back down to low, cover and leave to simmer for 30 minutes, lifting the lid occasionally to stir, and adding more stock gradually.200 milliliters vegetable stock, ½ teaspoon salt
- Remove from the heat, and serve warm with a some freshly ground black pepper, a drizzle of olive oil over the top and a grating of cheese (optional).olive oil, parmesan cheese, ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- Select a savoy cabbage with bright unblemished leaves.
- Wash and pat dry the cabbage, then slice it through the middle and cut away the central hard core. Slice the leaves into thin strips, around 1 inch wide.
- Prepare at least a couple of hours in advance for best results.
- This recipe is vegetarian, but if you wish to use meat, add it after softening the garlic then sauté till brown before adding the cabbage.
- Drizzle some good quality olive oil over the top and a grating of cheese (optional).
- Store in a closed container in the fridge for up to 3 days.