Sauteed cabbage is from heaven. When it is paired up with caramelized onions and browned bits of pancetta, it becomes something altogether better – the sum is greater than the parts. This stuff is dangerous – since it doesn’t last long when you serve it, I’m making double next time.
Sauteed cabbage with onions and pancetta (inspired by Marcella Hazan)
1 1/2 pounds cabbage (savoy, Napa, or just regular old green)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup onion chopped fine
1/3 cup pancetta chopped fine
salt to taste
Tear or cut each cabbage leaf into 2 or 3 pieces, and set them aside.
Put the oil, onion, and pancetta in a saute pan, turn the heat on to medium, and cook, stirring from time to time until the onion becomes deeply golden and the pancetta is browned.
Put in as many of the cabbage pieces as will not overfill the pan. If the cabbage doesn’t all fit at first, you can add the rest when the first batch has cooked briefly and diminished in bulk. Add salt, cover the pan, and cook until the central rib of the leaves just reaches tenderness, about 30 minutes. Turn the cabbage over from time to time as it cooks. Serve immediately.