Recipe: Stir fried cabbage

Cabbage is often an underestimated vegetables.

“People are surprised at how tasty the humble cabbage can be when prepared properly with the right mix of spices,” says Auckland-based Malaysian chef Yougeswari Subramaniam.

Here, she shares her easy-to-prepare recipe for home cooks looking to make the most of a traditionally unsung vegetable.

Malaysian stir fried cabbageIngredients

¼ cabbage, in ¼ inch slices

1 tbsp oil

1 onion, diced

1/2 tsp mustard seeds

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp cumin

3-4 curry leaves

1 bunch coriander

Salt to taste


Heat oil to medium heat and once sizzling quickly add the onion, mustard seeds, curry leaves and cumin together. Sauté until the mixture becomes fragrant.

Add the turmeric and mix being careful not to burn. Quickly add the cabbage and stir. Continue stirring for 1-2 minutes. Add a pinch of salt and stir for another 1-2 minutes – more or less according to your preference.

Remove from heat and plate the dish. Garnish with fresh coriander.

Tips and tricks

Cabbage shouldn’t be chopped too thinly as this can result in overcooking and loss of flavour.

‘Minced lamb cabbage’ is a tasty alternative for those wanting a heartier meal. Add minced lamb together with the onion and cook through before adding the cabbage.

To add a kick to the dish add chopped green chillies (deseeded) when cooking the onion.

Yougeswari Subramaniam is owner and chef at Santhiya’s Malaysian restaurant in Auckland, New Zealand, and has been dishing up delicious Malaysian meals on banana leaves every Sunday for more than 18 years. Read why her Banana Leaf Sunday is been so popular with Kiwis for close to two decades.


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