To illustrate grilling’s versatility, Raichlen prepares a richly flavored whole head of cabbage that cooks slowly over moderate heat while covered. This preparation is a showpiece.
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 wedge and about 1/2 cup sausage mixture)
• 2 cups hickory wood chips
• 1 (2-pound) head green cabbage
• 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
• 1/8 teaspoon salt
• 2 links hot turkey Italian sausage (about 6 ounces)
• 1 1/2 cups chopped onion
• 2 garlic cloves, minced
• 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
• 1/4 cup barbecue sauce (such as Stubbs)
1. Soak wood chips in water 1 hour.
2. To prepare grill for indirect grilling, place a disposable aluminum foil pan in center of grill. Arrange charcoal around foil pan; heat to medium heat. Crumple a 12-inch-long piece of aluminum foil with your hands to form a 3-inch ring. Place foil ring on grill rack over foil pan.
3. Cut core from cabbage to create a cone-shaped cavity about 4 inches wide and 3 inches deep. Discard core. Place cabbage, cavity side up, in foil ring. Sprinkle cavity with pepper and salt.
4. Remove casings from sausage. Cook sausage in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Add onion, garlic, and jalapeño to pan; sauté 3 minutes or until lightly browned. Stir in barbecue sauce. Spoon sausage mixture into cavity in cabbage. Tent cabbage loosely with additional aluminum foil.
5. Arrange half of wood chips over coals. Cover grill, and grill 40 minutes or until tender when pierced with a skewer. Add additional wood chips and charcoal as needed. Remove foil from top of cabbage, and grill an additional 50 minutes or until browned. Remove any dried or charred leaves. Present stuffed cabbage whole, then cut into wedges.
Steven Raichlen, Recipes adapted from Steven Raichlen’s books How to Grill (Workman, 2001) and BBQ USA (Workman, 2003), Cooking Light