Cabbage rounds are transformed when roasted in a hot oven....

Cabbage rounds are transformed when roasted in a hot oven. (March 2022) Credit: Marge Perry

This could change your relationship to cabbage forever. If you’ve only ever boiled cabbage (and smelled up the house in the process), you haven’t seen this humble vegetable at its very best.

Roasting cabbage brings out its best: the edges get charred and toasty, and the center has none of that sulfurous smell and taste of boiled cabbage. The flavor is somewhat similar to roast Brussels sprouts: slightly sweet and nutty. On St. Patrick's Day I gild the lily by topping the roast cabbage rounds with toasted panko breadcrumbs, but most of the time I simply serve it sprinkled with seasoning.

Roasted Cabbage Rounds

1 4-pound green cabbage

¼ cup olive oil

½ teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon caraway seeds

1/8 teaspoon dried thyme

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Coat two sheet pans with cooking spray.

2. Cut the cabbage from top to bottom (The core is at the bottom) into ¾-inch thick rounds. Place the largest rounds on one sheet pan and the smaller ones on the other pan. Drizzle the olive oil over the top and brush it to spread it evenly over the surface. Sprinkle with the salt, caraway seeds, thyme and black pepper.

3. Bake 25 minutes. Check the tray of smaller cabbage rounds: if the leaves near the core are fork tender and the edges browned, remove the one tray from the oven. The cabbage remaining in the oven will need another 6-8 minutes.

Optional Breadcrumb Topping:

½ cup panko

2 tablespoons olive oil

1. Combine the panko and olive oil until the crumbs are evenly wetted. Place in a skillet over medium high and cook, stirring often, until the crumbs are golden brown, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle over the cooked cabbage.