Roasted Cabbage with Bacon Gremolata

From Andrea Bemis:

"This is one of our favorite winter side dishes, and we get rave re­views each time we serve it for company. I've brought back the bacon gremolata yet again because it pairs so nicely with the roasted cabbage. I hope you and your guests find as much joy and pleasure in this simple recipe as we do."

Adapted from Dishing Up the Dirt by Andrea Bemis, copyright © 2017. Published by Harper Wave, an imprint of Harper Collins Publishers.

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

For the cabbage:

  • 1 medium-sized head of cabbage (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For the bacon gremolata:

  • 3/4 cup roasted unsalted almonds
  • 4 strips (about 1/4 pound) good-quality thick-cut bacon
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • Pinch of kosher salt

To serve:

  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Method

1 Heat the oven to 400F. Arrange two oven racks in the upper and lower third of the oven.

2 Slice the cabbage: Peel off one or two of the thin, limp outer layers of the cabbage. Trim the stem so that it is flush with the bottom of the cabbage (if it isn't already).

Set the cabbage upright and slice into 1-inch thick slices. Don't worry if a few of the outer layers unfurl or fall away.

Roasted Cabbage with Bacon Gremolata

3 Brush the cabbage slices with olive oil: Use a pastry brush to cover both sides of the cabbage slices with olive oil, or use your fingers to rub the oil in. Season both sides with a little salt and pepper.

Roasted Cabbage with Bacon Gremolata

4 Roast the cabbage: Arrange the cabbage slices in a single layer on a baking sheet. Roast on the lower oven rack for 35 to 45 minutes, flipping the slices halfway through cooking.

When done, both sides should be seared an even golden-brown with crispy edges and the center of the slices should be tender.

Roasted Cabbage with Bacon Gremolata

5 While the cabbage is roasting, prepare the bacon gremolata. If using unroasted almonds, arrange them on another sheet pan and roast in the upper part of the oven for about 10 minutes, until toasted and fragrant. Remove from the oven, cool briefly, then finely chop using a chef's knife (or pulse a few times in a food processor, but be careful not to over process or you'll make almond butter!)

Cook the bacon in a skillet over medium heat until very crispy. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain. When cool, roughly chop.

Combine the chopped almonds, chopped bacon, minced parsley, lemon zest, and a pinch of kosher salt in a small mixing bowl. Toss to combine and set aside. (This bacon gremolata can be prepared ahead and kept refrigerated in an airtight container for about a week.)

Roasted Cabbage with Bacon Gremolata

6 To serve: As soon as the cabbage slices are done roasting, transfer to a serving platter or individual plates. Sprinkle with a few spoonfuls of bacon gremolata and grated Parmesan cheese. Serve warm.