Sauteed Cabbage with Fennel, Apples and Ground Lamb

  • Posted on: March 10, 2015

Sauteed cabbage, fennel and lamb 021I made this recipe for a presentation at Natural Chef School on digestive wellness and healing the gut.   I practiced several times before the presentation as I had to make it in a certain time frame and well to be honest, talking in front of a group is my least favorite thing to do.    It really is my very least favorite thing to do.  I wanted to be prepared.  Not that I am alone- it’s most peoples.  Any more than 3 people at a cocktail party listening to me tell a story and I start to break a little sweat.   I heard a talk once about giving speeches and the speaker said for most people talking in front of others is a bigger fear that dying.   Isn’t that crazy?   But I get it.    She said “feel the fear and do it anyway.”

It applies to so many things in life so I’ll say it again.  “Feel the fear and do it anyways.” 

I can remember being so afraid to jump off the diving board as a kid- but once I did, I wanted to do it again and again.

I had to wanted to give a speech at my brothers wedding last year and I did.  But I was nervous for months.  Seriously.  Actually years.  I was nervous to give a speech at his wedding starting right after he gave a speech at my wedding.  Because he gave a great speech.  And because I hate talking in public.  He mentioned to me once that he wanted a small wedding.  I was so relieved to hear this.   He didn’t have a small wedding though.   I was nervous to give a speech at his wedding before he he was even engaged.   Ridiculous.  I know.   But I did it because he is more important than my fear of speaking in public.   We don’t want our fears to own us.

Whether you are starting a business, trying a new sport, giving a speech, making a big change in your life, ending a bad relationship, starting a new career, moving to a new place…whatever it is, we all have fear but we can’t let it control us.   When you go for it, even though you have fear, that’s when great things happen.

But it’s scary at first.

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So,  I made this recipe several times so that I was at least very prepared while being quite nervous.

It is a quick and very nourishing meal for any night of the week.

Until last year, lamb was not a meat I cooked with or would order at a restaurant. But we cooked with it fairly often at Natural Chef school and I became fond of the taste.  Lamb is a healthy meat to cook with and it provides a good source of zinc, selenium and B vitamins.   If you are unsure about lamb, this is a good recipe to start with.   I use a small quantity in this recipe and it’s not overpowering.  If you just don’t want to eat lamb, you can substitute ground turkey or beef -or leave meat out of the equation entirely and you’ll have yourself a great vegetarian dish.

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Cabbage has so many health benefits and is particularly beneficial for the digestive track.   It has been used for centuries to heal digestive problems such as stomach ulcers in it’s whole form or juiced.  It soothes and calms the intestinal tract.   Combined with fennel, green apples, onion and rosemary, this is one flavorful and healthy dish.

Sauteed cabbage, fennel and lamb 001I love rosemary salt and it is so easy to make.  I usually make a big batch  (to fill a standard salt shaker) and keep some by my stove when I am cooking.  If you don’t have time to dry out the rosemary as the recipe call for, freshly chopped rosemary with sea salt works just fine.

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This is a great weeknight dish that is quick and flavorful- and there are usually leftovers for lunch the next day which is always a plus.

For other quick weeknight meal, try my rosemary chicken with purple potatoes or spaghetti squash with pistachio pesto.

I feel the fear with every post but I click the publish button anyway.




Sauteed Red Cabbage with Fennel, Apple, Lamb and Rosemary

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 4-6


  • 1/2 lb ground lamb (or ground turkey if you prefer)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 head of red cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp unfiltered apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp rosemary-salt blend (recipe below)- or chop fresh rosemary and add sea salt
  • 1 green apple, sliced into matchsticks


In a large pot over medium heat, saute lamb for about 5 minutes, until lightly browned,using a fork to break up pieces. Remove and set aside in a bowl.

Add coconut oil and onion to pan and saute for 5 minutes. Add fennel and saute for another 5 minutes.

Add cabbage and cook until it begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Add vinegar and deglaze the pan with a wooden spoon. Add rosemary-salt blend and cook until cabbage is fork tender, about another 5 minutes.

Add the apples and lamb and cook for a few more minutes.

Serve warm


Rosemary- Salt Blend (this is a great mixture to have on hand) Yield 1/4 cup

1/2 cup fresh rosemary 1/4 cup coarse sea salt

Procedure: Dry out Rosemary in an oven on low for 4 hours, or overnight Mince dry Rosemary and with a mortar and pestle, combine salt and rosemary and mix until well incorporated.

recipe adapted from Practical Paleo
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