I spent weeks last winter working on this recipe to reproduce the Czech red cabbage I loved in my childhood. The whole family ate a lot of this on visits to Prague. Now that it’s cabbage season my family thought it was time to break it out again. We paired it with Uly’s bratwurst sausage (from Marina Market of course) and baby potatoes from the garden for a wonderfully Oktoberfest kind of dinner.
Start with one large or two small red cabbages. Lots of farmers have them right now.
Quarter the cabbage, remove the hearts (I give them to Ted, who eats them), and slice in ¼ inch strips.
Slice six strips of bacon into lardons. Render these in the pan until the bacon is crispy.
Combine one cup of water with 1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar, and measure out 2 tbs. brown sugar and 2 tbs. dry mustard.
Add the sliced cabbage to the bacon in the pan. It’s a little scary at first because it absolutely fills the pan, and you’ll be thinking, my gosh, this is too much cabbage.
Turn it in the bacon fat until it’s coated, then let it sit for five minutes, turning occasionally. It will wilt down quite a bit (whew!) After five minutes, add the brown sugar and mustard and toss the cabbage to coat. Pour a little of the water and vinegar mixture in the pan and scrape the bottom to deglaze it, then add the rest of the liquid. Simmer for 45 minutes until the cabbage is tender. Voila, a taste of Prague!