What's the allure of cranberry sauce on the Thanksgiving table? Its sweet tartness breaks up the starchy monotony of the meal, interjecting little bites of much needed acidity. When choosing recipes from Alton Brown's Good Eats 2: The Middle Years, I was looking for another dish that could impart a little cranberry-sauce-esque brightness to the meal. This German Hot Slaw ended up doing just that.
The combination of shredded cabbage sauteed in bacon fat, bits of onion, caraway seeds, and a healthy dose of apple cider vinegar smells almost identical to a Reuben sandwich, and flavor-wise tastes like choucroute. Even though it doesn't fall into the category of traditional Thanksgiving sides, this hot slaw seemed perfectly at home in between the bowls of stuffing and mashed potatoes. But perhaps my favorite part of this slaw is the leftovers factor, piling it on top of leftover turkey to make a day after Thanksgiving Reuben.
As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Good Eats: The Middle Years to give away this week.
- 6 rashers thick-sliced bacon
- 1 small onion, grated
- Kosher salt, to taste
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
- 1 pound green cabbage, shredded
- 1 teaspoon caraway seeds, thinly sliced
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Crisp the bacon in a 12-inch straight-sided pan over medium heat. Remove and reserve the bacon. Remove all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat. Add the onion and a pinch of salt and sweat until semi-translucent, 2 to 3 minutes.
Pour in the vinegar and add the brown sugar, bring to a boil, reduce the heat slightly, and simmer for 1 to 2 minutes, until reduced and slightly thickened. Pour the dressing into a small bowl.
Return the pan (and any bits of dressing still left in it) to medium heat. Add the cabbage and caraway and sauté until warm and slightly browned but still crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Return the bacon and dressing to the pan and toss to coat. Taste, season with salt and black pepper, and serve immediately.