Chicken Chile Cabbage Stew ‡

A subtitle for this recipe could well be “What to do with cabbage after the stir-fry.” And you may notice that there are quite a few other recipes among these pages that might well also share this subtitle. Obviously, there must be reasons for the rather routine appearance of this constituent. One is that cabbage is dietetically desirable and adds variety to an otherwise bland diabetic regimen; another is that it can be extremely tasty when properly prepared. Probably the main reason, though, is the following: On Fridays, after my early morning workout at the gym, I grocery shop. Thursday nights are date nights. So Wednesday nights are clean-out nights, to use up the vegetables still lingering in the refrigerator.

One Wednesday I happened to have on hand some cabbage (after a stir-fry), mushrooms (always), and fresh chiles (usually). That coincidence, my predilection toward one-dish meals, the dictates of my diet, and my proneness to amalgamate strange concoctions led me to this stew. I thought it was delicious, and my wife gave it an unsolicited thumbs up. So I immediately jotted down the recipe for future reference, which has been exercised with reasonable frequency since. Brilliantly, I named it after its principle ingredients.

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 chicken thighs, skinned, boned, in bite-sized pieces
  • 1 turkey Italian sausage, casing removed, cubed
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 tsp garlic purée
  • 1 large jalapeņo chile, seeded, chopped
  • 1 new Mexico green chile, seeded, chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled, in chunks
  • ¼ head cabbage, shredded and chopped fine
  • 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tsp low sodium chicken bouillon powder
  • <salt> to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • cilantro sauce, garnish to taste
  • habanero hot sauce, garnish to taste

Brown the chicken and sausage in the olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and continue to cook until the onions soften and begin to brown. Add the chiles, carrot, cabbage, and mushrooms; cook, uncovered, until the cabbage, too, softens, about five minutes. Pour in the wine, bouillon, <salt>, and pepper, then cook with the lid on until the carrots are al dente. Remove the lid, turn up the heat, and reduce the liquid to desired thickness for a stew. Put in bowls, garnish with cilantro and hot sauce, and serve immediately.

Serves 2 or 3.

Chicken Chile Beetgreen Stew ‡

One Wednesday I found fresh beet greens needing to be used up. I substituted them for the cabbage in the precedent recipe, only to find that my wife, again, in mid-bite with spoon still in hand, put two thumbs up.

Aside from being remarkably delicious, the stew, with its red beet stalks amid the orange carrot and green leaves, topped with golden Habanero and green cilantro, was delightfully pleasing to the eye. This recipe, too, is a real winner.