I think you can guess from the title the way dinner went last night. We had a roast – pork, apples sauce, roast potatoes, roast honeyed parsnips, sprouts, asparagus, sweet corn and peas… and a new recipe I was trying from a Dutch Facebook page – red cabbage! Oh and there was gravy of course… and crackling. My husband loves beetroot… so thought I must have made a dish of shredded beetroot with spices… sounds curious, maybe I should try making it… However, it was braised red cabbage with apples, onion and spices – and I thought it was delicious… he said it was ‘alright‘… but only ate one tiny mouthful.

For dinner tonight we had macaroni cheese with little bit of chorizo, sweet corn and peas (two of my family aren’t great veg eaters, carrots, sweet corn and peas… that’s about it!) We had a bowl of the red cabbage left over and I had an inspiration to have it with the macaroni – gosh, it was delicious! I had it cold and it was a  refreshing contrast to the cheese – a definite winner!

Macaroni cheese (I’m sure you have your own recipe but here’s mine)

  • macaroni or other pasta enough for however many there are of you
  • butter
  • flour
  • milk
  • mature Cheddar cheese (it’s not economical to have cheap mild cheese)
  • pepper
  • optional extras such as ham, bacon, chorizo, fried sweet peppers etc
  1. cook the pasta, don’t have the water too salty as you’ll get that from the cheese
  2. make a roux with enough butter, flour and pepper to make the quantity of sauce you want for the number of people you are eating and whether they are very hungry or not
  3. make sure the flour cooks (but doesn’t catch) and add the ilk gradually, stirring it all the time so the lumpy roux becomes a velvety sauce
  4. add as much cheese as you like – some people like it really cheesy… some don’t! and add whatever extras you want – I like lots of different things
  5. mix the macaroni and the sauce (make sure you have a big enough pot)
  6. add extra milk if it is too stiff (or some water left over from straining the macaroni)
  7. put into an oven proof dish, sprinkle with more cheese and maybe some baby tomatoes
  8. cook in a hottish oven until the cheese is all lovely and brown
  9. despite it being a very high carb meal, it is nice with more carbs in the form of crusty bread

Red cabbage Dutch style (my interpretation)

  • half a small red cabbage (unless you have a family who loves it and will eat bowls of it – in which case have a bigger cabbage and use all of it) finely sliced – I used my mandolin
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 dessert apple cut into chunky cubes
  • 2 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp wine or cider vinegar
  • optional pomegranate syrup
  • spices of your choice – but cloves are pretty essential! Some people love cinnamon but I don’t so I missed it out – I used cardamom, mixed spice or allspice  (allspice is better)
  • seasoning
  • a little water
  1. put everything in a pot – cook on the top or in the oven on an extremely low heat
  2. the pot might be really full to begin but it will squish down as it cooks
  3. stir from time to time so it doesn’t stick to the bottom, and add a little more water if necessary
  4. it took about 1½ hours to cook – but I don’t think it can really overcook

Yum!

 

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