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Bite Of Minnesota: Caramelized Onions With Cabbage And Ham

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Crystal Grobe Crystal Grobe
Crystal Grobe is a local food writer who truly enjoys creating new...
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(credit: Crystal Grobe)

(credit: Crystal Grobe)

Happy Holidays! Thanksgiving went off without a hitch and was full of food and family. We did two Thanksgivings this year — one with turkey and one with ham so that offered some variety over the two days of heavy eating. For the first time we had plenty of leftovers and I made sure to make the most of them in other dishes.

First, I took the turkey carcass and made 14 cups of turkey stock, some of which was used in Thanksgiving No. 2’s ham glaze and brussels sprouts side dish. Next, the leftover turkey (and more stock) went into a coconut curry green lentil and turkey soup while stuffing and ham leftovers were turned into an egg bake for Saturday morning. Finally, we’re using the rest of the cranberry sauce as a yogurt topping and since I still had a bunch of ham in the fridge, I created yet another dinner using leftovers, caramelized onions and cabbage.

This cabbage dish is something I first tried back in 2007 and I think the original recipe came from a magazine like Bon Appetit. I remember it being a surprisingly delicious dish but apparently it took six years for me to make it again. I’ve made a few alterations and it’s a great way to use leftover holiday ham while squeezing in some healthy vegetables to balance out the pork abundance.

Caramelized Onions, Cabbage, & Ham
(4 servings)

4 slices of bacon
2 large onions, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp caraway seeds
1 head of green cabbage, thinly sliced (about 6 cups)
1 1/2 cups diced ham
1 cup cooked pasta (rotini or elbow macaroni)
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

Cook bacon in a large skillet until crisp and transfer to paper towels to drain. Crumble bacon and set aside.

Add onions and caraway seeds to bacon drippings and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until onions are dark and caramelized. Increase heat to medium and add cabbage; cook until wilted. Add ham, crumbled bacon, and cooked pasta. Toss to combine and cook until warmed through. Top with Parmesan cheese, season with salt and pepper, and serve.

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