Saturday, June 25, 2011

cabbage varities

There are several cabbage varieties available to the backyard vegetable gardener. They vary in size and taste. Smaller varieties tend to mature faster, while larger varieties take a little longer. If you live in an area with a short spring season, you may want to plant smaller varieties in the beginning of the year. If the fall season tends to last a little longer, you can plant a larger variety then.

Here is a list of some common cabbage varieties, along with plant descriptions, etc..
  • Earliana - heads average 5 inches across and weigh about 2 pounds, good flavor, ready in 60 days after transplanting, light green outside and creamy white inside
  • Orient Express - this Chinese cabbage variety matures in 45 days from seed, small heads average 1 1/2 pounds, dense center with dark green outer
    leaves, peppery and sweet flavor, good crisp texture
  • King Slaw - this large variety averages 15 pounds, ready in 105 days from seed, large blue/green outer leaves, creamy white center is dense, mild flav                                                                        
  • Two Seasons - this Chinese variety is oblong in shape, averaging 10 inches tall and 7 inches across, dense leafy center is creamy yellow, light green outer leaves, matures in about 65 days after transplanting, sweet and tangy flavor 

  • Salad Delight - this red cabbage matures in 50 days after transplanting, heads are maroon in color and average 3 pounds, inside is dense and almost purple in color with distinct white ribs throughout, sweet and peppery flavor
  • Early Flat Dutch - this variety features light green outer leaves and a creamy white center, heads average 8 pounds, ready in 80 days after transplanting, dense heads are more flat than other varieties
  • Early Jersey Wakefield - this variety matures in 70 days after transplanting, heads average 3 pounds, dark green outer leaves and a light colored center, head is almost cone shaped and dense and features a sweet flavor, holds well for a couple of weeks on the plant after maturity
  • Golden Cross - this cabbage variety matures in 45 days after transplanting, small green heads average 2 pounds and are about the size of a softball, medium green outer leaves and a creamy white center, heads are tight and well-formed, sweet flavor

         Savoy Cabbage    

       A.k.a. curly cabbage. With ruffled, lacy, deeply ridged leaves, Savoy cabbages are perhaps the prettiest cabbages around. The leaves are more loosely layered and less tightly packed than green or red cabbage, although its uses are similar. it is delicious thinly sliced in salads or quickly stir-fried.

Napa Cabbage

Image of Napa Cabbage
A.k.a. Chinese cabbage or celery cabbage. Napa cabbage doesn't look like the head cabbages listed above. It has long light green leaves that flower off of thick, white stalks. It looks a bit like a cross between romaine lettuce and pale Swiss chard. It has a lovely mild flavor with a peppery kick that is delicious in salads or stir-frys. You can also turn it into spicy kimchi.

Bok Choy

Bok Choy (and its youthful friend, baby Bok Choy) has distinct leaves growing from a central stalk. It looks a fair amount like Swiss chard but with pale green stalks and leaves. It has a mild but bright cabbage-y flavor. Bok Choy is most often used in stir-frys, but braising also brings out its sweet flavor. Baby bok choy can be cooked whole, if you like, but all bok choy is perhaps at its best when the leaves are separated and cooked loose.
Brussel sprouts

Brussels Sprouts don't just look like tiny cabbages, they are! They're usually sold loose, which is a fine and dandy way to buy them. But if you find them sold on the stalk, know that they will keep for several weeks if chilled.
Trim the ends, peel off any dark green leaves from each sprout, and roast, steam, or sauté them. Or, keep it simple and just slice them into a salad.

Red Cabbage

Red cabbage looks like green cabbage except, well, it's red. Or, to be more specific, it's a lovely magenta.
Red cabbage heads tend to be a bit smaller than green cabbages, but look for similarly tightly packed,

moist-looking leaves and heads that feel heavy for their size. Red cabbage is delicious thinly sliced in salads like Red Cabbage Slaw, mixed into slaws with green cabbage, or cooked

Green Cabbage


Basic. Solid. Compact. Long-lasting. Green cabbage is the Toyota (or Honda!) of cabbages. Use it in salads and slaws, stir-fry it, or long-cook it to bring out its essential sweet nature.
Look for heads that feel heavy for their size (which can range from softball to almost basketball size),
with tightly packed, moist looking leaves. Classic Creamy Cole Slaw calls for plain-Jane green cabbage, as does Beet and Cabbage Borscht and Grilled Cabbage.

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