Cavalo nero with pine nuts & pecorino


Cavalo Nero is a very sturdy cabbage and does not suffer the sogginess of salad leaves. Therefore it is great for packed lunches the next day. For maximum flavour marinate the cabbage in the dressing for a few hours to soften the cabbage and let it absorb the flavours.


1 bunch of Cavalo Nero sliced into 2/3 cm ribbons
1 handful of sultanas or dried sour cherries
50g pine nuts
Thick slivers of pecorino cheese
Black pepper to serve


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove crushed
1 tsp of salt
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
Juice of 1 lemon and the rind grated
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp fresh thyme or oregano
1 tbsp of finely grated pecorino
1 tsp black pepper


Firstly combine all of the dressing ingredients. A pestle and mortar is best for this. First crush the garlic with the salt (the salt will help break up the garlic) then add the oil, honey, vinegar, lemon juice and rind, thyme / oregano, pecorino and keep beating it until the dressing emulsifies. Instead of thyme / oregano I have used dried sage but it has quite a bold flavour so be warned!

Put the chopped cabbage in a bowl with the dried fruit. Pour over the dressing and massage it well in to the cabbage with your hands for 3/4 minutes until it starts to wilt. Cover and set aside for a few hours minimum.

Toast the pine nuts on a low heat (no oil required) in a pan until lightly golden and set aside.

When it is ready to serve combine half the pine nuts with the cabbage and sprinkle the rest on the top along with the pecorino (as much as you deem necessary) with a sprinkle of salt, generous grind of pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.

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