First, I apologize that I don’t know the exact varieties of these cabbages. I bought them at the market and didn’t/couldn’t find out the specific varieties. It’s obvious they have different keeping qualities, though. These were kept in the garage until it got below freezing, then moved to the breezeway (~50 degrees).
The one on the left is still fresh and cabbage-y; the one on the right is quite papery. I think if I peel back the outer leaves, there will still be decent cabbage in there, but it’s definitely going to require a bit of creative trimming.
I’m glad I bought 2 different kinds. Usually, I just buy the big ones because I want to store a lot of cabbage, and the big variety is way cheap. It’s a little hard to tell due to the perspective, but the cabbage on the right is at least twice as big as the one on the left. These cabbages are a steal – they usually weigh in at 7-8 pounds and cost $2. They are fabulous fresh – crunchy and juicy – and they make great kraut. They aren’t perfectly round, more like a slightly flattened ball, and they are fairly white inside. You can see they also lose their green color in storage. They do, however, appear to sprout! Look closely – this is trying to bloom. The bud looks like a broccoli floret.
The smaller, greener cabbage was rock-hard when I bought it. I think it was $2 as well, but weighed far less than the flat cabbage. However, see how much better it held up over the winter? I made slaw out of this one today, and while it’s not garden-fresh, it’s certainly acceptable. And at least somewhat green. It’s amazing how all winter food turns up white: cabbage, potatoes, parsnips, rutabagas, pork…
So this year, I’m trying to grow some of my own cabbage. Some will be kept in the greenhouse (I know, El, it’s the only way to go! *wink*) and some will go in the root cellar.