Thursday, September 17, 2009
1 am on Saturday morning and I awoke to a CRACK! At first I had no idea what it was, I waited...a minute later it came again, a crack followed by a low rolling rumble. It hit me, thunder! You're probably wondering what's so interesting about this. Well, thunderstorms are an extremely rare occurrence in the Bay Area. The last time I can remember a thunder and lightning storm here was in 2005. I lay awake, just listening, the sounds reminding me of late summers as a kid, sitting in a chair at our huge kitchen window, watching lightning strikes over Mt. Lassen at night, counting the seconds till the huge clap of thunder followed, gasping in delight as the sky rumbled and listening to the storm get closer and closer, the sky streaked with purple and white light.
They said the Saturday storm was supposed to be dry, but it wasn't. The tap of the rain came soon after the thunder began. The smell was delicious. We'd had plans to go hiking that morning. Even though it was gray and damp, we decided to head out to Mt. Tam anyway for a hike to Cataract Falls. It turned out to be sunny and beautiful on the Mountain, though the evidence of rain was apparent. The hike was strenuous. Uphill the entire way, and the steep sets of stairs just keep coming, but once we got there it was beautiful. We had almost the entire trail to ourselves. Hawks, lizards, woodpeckers...we even spotted a crayfish in one of the pools. Cataract Falls is on the North East side of Mt. Tam, just above Alpine Lake. We'd agreed it would be a healthy day, just hiking, water and trail mix. That lasted until the end of the hike, where we found ourselves at the Marin Brewing Company for a post-hike beer and a bowl of steamed clams. Well worth it.
When we got back to the East Bay, the cloud cover was still in full effect. Dinner needed a warm and comforting side. Ilsa claims this is her favorite way to eat cabbage. I have to admit, adding wine, butter and Parmesan to cabbage really does make it more attractive and tasty. Nothing wrong with that!
White Wine Braised Cabbage with Parmesan
Can easily be made vegan by subsituting olive oil in place of butter, and ommiting the Parmesan.
1 head green cabbage, cored and chopped into good size pieces
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 tbsp butter
salt and pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil over high heat in a wide skillet. Once hot, add the cabbage. Turn the heat down to medium and let sit for about a minute. Stir occasionally for about 5 minutes more, reducing the heat if the cabbage starts to brown. Next, add the white wine. Stir and continue to cook for about 3-5 minutes more. Add salt and pepper, remove from heat and top with Parmesan.
Ok, this one's not vegan. But it's CLOSE!