Cabbage Wedges With Warm Pancetta Vinaigrette
Note: From “How to Grill Everything,” from Mark Bittman.
• 1 small head red or green cabbage (2 lb. or less)
• 5 tbsp. good-quality olive oil, divided
• 4 oz. thickly sliced pancetta, chopped
• 3 tbsp. sherry vinegar or white wine vinegar
• Salt and pepper
Start the coals or heat a gas grill for medium direct cooking. Make sure the grates are clean.
Discard any discolored leaves from the cabbage, cut it into 8 wedges, then trim the stem a bit but leave enough on to keep the wedges together. Brush the cabbage on all sides with 2 tablespoons of the oil.
Put the cabbage on the grill directly over the fire, cut side down. Close the lid and cook until the bottom browns, about 5 minutes; turn and cook the other side. Transfer to a platter.
While cabbage is grilling, put the pancetta in a small skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until it renders its fat and the meat crisps, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the vinegar and remaining 3 tablespoons oil and whisk to combine; taste and add some salt and pepper. (You can make the vinaigrette up to a day ahead; refrigerate and gently reheat it before using.) Pour the hot dressing over the cabbage wedges and serve.
Variations/Warm Bacon-Cumin Vinaigrette: Substitute diced thick-sliced or slab bacon for the pancetta and add 1 teaspoon cumin seeds along with the vinegar.
Apple-Cider-Caraway Vinaigrette: Whisk together 1/2 cup olive oil, 3 tablespoons cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon caraway seeds, and salt and pepper to taste. No need to heat it up.