Vegetables Facts & Tips 18: Cabbage

The cabbage is a popular cultivar of the species Brassica oleracea Linne (Capitata Group) of the Family Brassicaceae (or Cruciferae), and is used as a leafy green vegetable. It is a herbaceous, biennial, dicotyledonous flowering plant distinguished by a short stem upon which is crowded a mass of leaves, usually green but in some varieties red or purplish, which while immature form a characteristic compact, globular cluster (cabbagehead).

The plant is also called head cabbage or heading cabbage, and in Scotland a bowkail, from its rounded shape. The Scots call its stalk a castock, and the British occasionally call its head a loaf.

Cabbage leaves often display a delicate, powdery, waxy coating called bloom. The sharp or bitter taste sometimes present in cabbage is due to glucosinolate(s).

The cultivated cabbage is derived from a leafy plant called the wild mustard plant, native to the Mediterranean region, where it is common along the seacoast. Also called sea cabbage and wild cabbage, it was known to the ancient Greeks and Romans. The English name derives from the Normanno-Picard caboche (head), perhaps from boche (swelling, bump).

That for the Wikipedia definition.


-Cabbages are also a good source of riboflavin.
-Cabbages are an excellent source of vitamins A, C, and K. It also contains significant amounts of glutamine, an amino acid which has anti-inflammatory properties.

-It is a source of indole-3-carbinol, or I3C, a compound used as an adjuvant therapy for recurrent respiratory papillomatosis, a disease of the head and neck caused by human papillomavirus (usually types 6 and 11) that causes growths in the airway that can lead to death.

-It also contains a marked amount of Calcium, Amino Acids, Potassium and Magnesium.

-The best season from January to May, and June to July.


Japan is the World’s No 5 cabbage grower, and so many varieties are available here:

“Haru Kabetsu/Haru Tama” or Spring Cabbage.
Planted in the Fall and harvested in Spring.
The inside is yellow and soft. Can be eaten raw.

“Fuyu Kabetsu/Kantam” or Winter Cabbage.
Planted in Summer and harvested in Winter.
Large number of leaves make it a very dense cabbage.
Great for stews as the shape will hold.

“Kougen Kabetsu” or Plateau Cabbage.
Planted at high altitude in Nagano and Gunma Prefectures in Spring and harvested in Summer and Fall.
Very cold-resistant.

Very rich in Vitamin C and carotenes, as well as many other nutrients, it is becoming increasingly popular as an organic vegetable both in homes and restaurants. Its small size and tenderness make it easy to use both as decoration and vegetable dish.

“Green Ball”.
Very popular raw in salads or pickled.

“Saboi Kabetsu”/Savoy Cabbage.
Prized for its eleganat looks.
It originated from French Savoie.
Very popular in stews.

“Murasaki kabetsu”/Violet or Red Cabbage.
Not to be confused with the Italian Trevise.
Natural colour.
Very popular raw in salads or pickled.

“Takenoko Kabetsu” or Bamboo Shoot Cabbage.
Popular for its shape. Very soft, great raw in salads.

“Me Kabetsu” or Brussels Sprouts.
Contains 4 times as many Vitamin C as other cabbage varieties.
Very popular in Japanese gastronomy thanks to its small size and taste.

“Kuro Kabstu” or Black Cabbage (Carboronero).
Actually of a very dark green colour.
High in fibers and rich in flavour, popular in stews.

“Keeru Kabetsu” or Kale Cabbage.
High in Vitamin C and carotenes.
Popular as vegetable juice and in stews.

“Afurika Kabetsu”, or African Cabbage.
Also called by its Swahili name, Skumaiki.
has been called the Super Cabbage for its high contents in nutrients.


-To preserve it cut, wrap it tightly in xellophane paper as not to allow any air between the leaves before you stor it in the fridge.

-Choose specimens with thick outer leaves.

-After cutting it. sprinkle with water as it will be easily absorbed by the leaves, amking easier to eat, but do it quickly!

-Choose specimens that feel heavy and tight.


-Combined withbasket clams, or cockles, or liver, or vegetal oil, helps combat anemia and ageing, reinforces the digestive system and general health.

-Combined with lemon, or orange, or grapefruit, ortangerines, helps combat artery hardening and stress, helps blood circulation and skin rejuvenatin.

-Combined with spinach, or eel, or carrot, or Chinese chives, helps combat common colds and canacer, promotes virility.

-Combined with Cashew nuts, or vegetal oil, or peanuts, or cod roe, helps combat stress and ageing, and promotes memory.

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