Monday, August 2, 2010

Coal Cracker Food

So I presently have a full head of cabbage in my possession from this week's CSA batch, and it is time to revisit my roots, I think, and put these foods to work in some "Coal cracker" recipes (PA Coal region slang for miners).

I recently had some close Jewish friends in stitches over the foods I particularly enjoy- mainly eastern european and german in origin- that in NYC is more associated with Jewish culture than not. Take for instance the pickled egg- a thing of glory, if you ask me. Ryan was repulsed to discover me eating hard boiled eggs at a rather fancy and upscale wine bar one night, but hey, who can resist a nice salty egg with their booze? Clearly, this is an acquired taste, but one I am proud to have.

Ah, the glory of childhood classics, cooked up with some good memories.

I'll be toasting my Grandparents with these tasty morsels- and thinking of Coaldale, people who say "Jewalry" instead of jewelry, call the comics "funny pages", fireflies "lightning bugs", get "roochy" in the bed at night, and carry "pocketbooks" instead of purses! Hope you are brave enough to try these tasty morsels yourself!


So my first attempt at old school cooking led me to realize a few things: holy butter, batman, and can I get a side of salt with that? All joking aside, it kinda dawned on me during this cooking exercise that the majority of the flavor in classic dishes come from fat and salt- so I definitely took a more modern approach. Therefore, the ingredients and techniques below are starred if they detour from the classic version! This makes about 2-3 servings, I paired it with some toast. PS: It is also quite bland looking with all the white... not pretty, but definitely tasty.

1/2 head of cabbage, remove outermost layer and core by cutting it out. Chop roughly
1/2 white onion
1/2 stick of butter* (original calls for WHOLE stick)
2 cloves garlic*
salt and pepper
chicken or vegetable stock*
Egg noodles * (Broad noodles are traditionally used)

Bring water to boil and cook egg noodles, about 8 minutes, then drain. In saute pan, cook onion and garlic in butter. Add in chopped cabbage, stir together, and then pour in stock and allow to simmer, 5-10 minutes, until cabbage wilts and softens. Salt and pepper generously, add in pinch of paprika, and mix noodles in. Top with a little bit of butter, Serve!

1 comment:

  1. "who can resist a nice salty egg with their booze? Clearly, this is an acquired taste, but one I am proud to have." You 'n me both. Some of the stuff I love to ingest while drinking you wouldn't believe.

    As for salt - it is the engine of flavor - like it or not.