Red cab­bage, red cab­bage or blue cabbage

Cab­bage is a typ­i­cal Ger­man and pop­u­lar win­ter veg­etable and has dif­fer­ent names depend­ing on the region. Its appe­tiz­ing col­or is char­ac­ter­is­tic: when raw, the cab­bage head is blue-pur­ple. In com­bi­na­tion with acid, it turns red, cre­at­ing the well-known “red cab­bage”. The blue col­or is cre­at­ed by adding alka­line prod­ucts, such as bak­ing soda or bak­ing pow­der, but also by adding sug­ar. What makes it healthy are its ingre­di­ents. As far as nutri­ents are con­cerned, red cab­bage is even supe­ri­or to white cabbage.

The ori­gin, prop­er­ties and his­to­ry of red cabbage

Red cab­bage is actu­al­ly just anoth­er cab­bage vari­ety and was cre­at­ed by muta­tions. Like broc­coli, flower or Brus­sels sprouts, it belongs to the cru­cif­er­ous family.

Red cab­bage orig­i­nat­ed in the Mediter­ranean region and Asia Minor. It is said to be descend­ed from wild sea cab­bage. The first records of cab­bage date back to the 11th cen­tu­ry. In Cen­tral Europe, it was first cul­ti­vat­ed in the Mid­dle Ages and was spread by the monasteries.

Even then, red cab­bage was a pop­u­lar win­ter veg­etable, as it pro­vid­ed peo­ple with impor­tant nutri­ents in win­ter. How­ev­er, cab­bage was also high­ly val­ued for its heal­ing prop­er­ties. For this rea­son, it was a rec­og­nized rem­e­dy and was used, among oth­er things, for hair loss, gout and diges­tive problems.

The red cab­bage is a closed cab­bage and slight­ly small­er than the white cab­bage. The cab­bage gets its blue-red col­or from the pig­ment antho­cyanin, which is also found in blue­ber­ries, beet and grapes. Red cab­bage tastes rather mild and slight­ly sweet. There are dif­fer­ent vari­eties of red cab­bage. A dis­tinc­tion is made between ear­ly red cab­bage, medi­um-ear­ly red cab­bage and autumn and per­ma­nent red cab­bage. It is grown in north­ern and cen­tral Europe and in the west­ern states of Ger­many. It is har­vest­ed from May to Decem­ber, with most being har­vest­ed in the fall. There­fore, red cab­bage is in sea­son from Sep­tem­ber to Novem­ber. How­ev­er, it is com­mer­cial­ly avail­able almost all year round.

The ingre­di­ents of red cabbage

The rea­son why red cab­bage is a pop­u­lar win­ter veg­etable is obvi­ous: It is the impor­tant nutri­ents that the cab­bage car­ries in itself and are impor­tant for our body espe­cial­ly in the cold win­ter days. In addi­tion to a high iron con­tent, red cab­bage also has many min­er­als and fiber. Par­tic­u­lar­ly note­wor­thy is the high vit­a­min C con­tent. For exam­ple, 100 g of red cab­bage con­tains 57.14 mg of vit­a­min C. Accord­ing­ly, 200 g of red cab­bage would already cov­er the entire dai­ly require­ment of vit­a­min C. In addi­tion to vit­a­min C, red cab­bage also con­tains vit­a­mins K, E and B.

Cab­bage not only pro­vides impor­tant nutri­ents, but it is also very low in calo­ries. Thus, for 100 g of cab­bage just 27 kcal.

The effect of red cab­bage on our body

Due to its high fiber con­tent, red cab­bage stim­u­lates intesti­nal activ­i­ty. In addi­tion, it can also lead to flat­u­lence in peo­ple who are sen­si­tive to it. This is due to the con­tained ingre­di­ent acetylcholine.

The pig­ment antho­cyanin not only pro­vides the beau­ti­ful col­or of the cab­bage, but also has pos­i­tive effects on our body. On the one hand, it is said to strength­en our immune sys­tem and on the oth­er hand, it has an anti-inflam­ma­to­ry effect.

Red cab­bage in the kitchen

Win­ter cab­bage is very flex­i­ble, which is why it can be pre­pared in many vari­a­tions. Among oth­er things, it can be eat­en raw as a sal­ad or cooked as a veg­etable. You can also find it in many bowls and it is prob­a­bly most often used as a side dish to roast goose, duck, game and pork. In com­bi­na­tion with apples, red cab­bage can also be used to make an excel­lent salad.

Red cab­bage is very healthy both raw and cooked. In the raw state, it has more nutri­ents, which are part­ly lost by the effect of heat. How­ev­er, in the cooked state, the vit­a­min C con­tent increas­es. This is due to the fact that in red cab­bage, vit­a­min C is bound in the form of ascor­bigen A and B. This is a pre­cur­sor of vit­a­min C. This is a pre­cur­sor of vit­a­min C. Both sub­stances split when heat­ed and release ascor­bic acid, which means that cab­bage veg­eta­bles release more vit­a­min C after cook­ing than when raw.

Buy­ing and stor­ing red cabbage

You can tell a good red cab­bage by its strong firm leaves, rich col­or and firm head. So just make sure it’s firm to the touch and has no wilt­ed leaves.

Not only fresh red cab­bage is avail­able in stores. It is also avail­able as ready-cooked cab­bage or frozen. How­ev­er, you should avoid the cab­bage in a jar, because here, as a rule, the sug­ar con­tent is con­sid­er­able. Frozen cab­bage, on the oth­er hand, can be bought with­out hes­i­ta­tion, as it is said to be just as healthy as fresh red cabbage.

The cab­bage can be stored for a long time with­out any prob­lems. Thus, in the veg­etable com­part­ment in the refrig­er­a­tor it will keep up to three weeks. If the cab­bage head is closed, with­out stains and cracks, it remains usable for sev­er­al months in the dark, cool cel­lar or in the refrig­er­a­tor. How­ev­er, if you have already cut it, be sure to store it in the refrig­er­a­tor wrapped in plas­tic wrap.