Ask any lover of cabbage and they'll show you myriads of ways they incorporate the crunchy vegetable into their daily meals. That leads us to the very first point on this list:
1. You ONLY boil your cabbages!
The first mistake you may be making is only boiling your cabbages. There are numerous exciting ways to enjoy cabbage other than the plain old method of boiling. You can enjoy your cabbage cooked into a stir-fry with or without other vegetables or, you can sauté, grill or roast it. These methods are indeed far more appealing as they prevent the cabbage from getting mushy and allow you to really savor the sweetness of the cabbage along with your favorite spices.
Tip: If you love the taste and texture of boiled cabbage, but just don't like the characteristic smell it gives off, add a few drops of vinegar during cooking or steam the cabbage instead.
2. You don't salt your cabbage appropriately
The second most popular people dislike cooking cabbage is how bland it may taste thanks to the excess moisture it releases during cooking. So, if you're making a slaw, experts advise that you salt the cabbage before combining it with other vegetables. Let the cabbage then sit for one hour at room temp before squeezing the excess moisture out.
This will prevent the cabbages from getting soggy.
3. You're not cooking the right kind of cabbage
Cabbages come in different varieties. The most common kind is the green cabbage which can be cooked in all the different ways possible. Then, there is the red cabbage which tends to turn blue when cooked and so, most commonly just eaten raw. If you do want to cook it, add a touch of acid like lemon juice or vinegar to lessen the effect.
The Savoy cabbage can be used as a substitute for green cabbage, just keep in mind that its leaves are a bit more tender than that of other cabbages. Napa is an oblong-shaped cabbage that has a sweet, soft flavor that’s best enjoyed raw or lightly stir-fried. Finally, there's the bok choy which has a flavor and texture that's very similar to spinach or Swiss chard than other types of cabbage.
Bottom line, use the right cabbage for the right recipe!
4. You overcook the cabbage
Overcooked cabbage is rather unappetizing as it becomes too soft and attains "that" annoying smell that dissuades many from cooking cabbage. When cooking cabbage, let it cook at a simmer or gentle boil and keep an eye on the clock. If shredded, the cabbage can cook for about 5 minutes, while wedges may take 10 to 15 minutes to cook.
5. You don't add baking soda
Adding baking soda to your boiling cabbage can help reduce the objectionable smell and maintain the green color long after when it typically turns grayish from cooking for too long. However, this may rid the cabbage of its nutritional value.