A cruciferous vegetable related to bok choy and brussels sprouts, cabbage comes in many shapes and hues. Signaled by its dark color, red cabbage boasts the highest anti-inflammatory and cancer-protective anthocyanin levels. Inner leaves should be brightly colored and snug on the head. It’s OK if outer leaves look a bit dry (peel off before using). Store, bagged and refrigerated.
Slice cabbage head in quarters through the stem; cut out the hard white core, then slice leaves crosswise into ribbons. Toss with crisp pear or apple slices, toasted walnuts, and golden raisins, and drizzle with a rice-vinegar dressing.
Red cabbage is well suited to braising. Melt a little butter in a heavy pot or Dutch oven; sauté chopped onions until tender, then stir in 2 tablespoons cider vinegar and 1⁄4 cup red wine, salt, a little brown sugar, and sweet spices such as cloves and allspice. Add cabbage wedges or ribbons and turn to coat. Cover tightly and cook over gentle heat until tender, 30–40 minutes.