Recipe by Vinita Jacinto from The Spice Whisperer Make House Calls
This rustic dish is common in North India, where cooks might vary the spices according to the seasons or Ayurvedic needs. Cumin seeds might be used instead of fennel, and red chile powder and/or green chiles could be added to generate heat. Jacinto created this particular combination to honor summer, as it features the cooling spices, coriander and fennel. Spiced cabbage is traditionally eaten as a vegetable accompaniment to curried lentils (dal), rice, and flatbread (rotis).
Serves 2 to 3
1 small green cabbage, chopped into small pieces (about 5 cups)
3 tablespoons ghee (or olive oil)
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon fennel seeds
1 tablespoon turmeric powder
2 tablespoons water
Salt to taste
Juice of 1 lime or 1 lemon
3 tablespoons freshly chopped cilantro
Heat the ghee (or olive oil) in a large frying pan over low to medium heat. Add the fennel seeds and cook for about 2 minutes until lightly brown.
Lower the heat, then add the coriander, turmeric, and water and fry the spices for about 2 minutes, stirring continually until you see bubbles forming as the water evaporates. When the spices emit a nutty aroma, add the chopped cabbage and stir well to coat with the spice mixture. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally until the cabbage is slightly wilted, then season with salt. Turn into a serving bowl and mix in the lemon or lime juice and the cilantro. May be served hot or at room temperature.