Thrips, cabbage worms
» Can be found throughout the layers of the cabbage head, usually on the outer layers
Confirmation of Cabbage Status
Since outer layers are prone to have insects, discard 4 outer layers when layers cover half the cabbage, and 2 layers, when the layers encompass the entire cabbage.
Steps for cleaning green cabbage
- Detach and discard loose outer leaves.
- Core the cabbage and split the head in half, or, more practically, in quarters. The instructions found below refer to cabbage cut in quarters. When the cabbage is split in half or remains whole, each layer consists of two leaves and the amount checked must be doubled.
- Peel off 8 leaves during the winter months (October – May), and 12 leaves during the summer months (June – September). Peel off 7 leaves from each quarter (depending on the size of
the quarter), usually made up of leaves that are a deeper green
- Carefully inspect these leaves by spreading the leaf out, exposing all the crevices and folds, and holding the leaf over a light box or in a very well-lit area. Inspect BOTH sides of each leaf.
- If no insects are found, the rest of the leaves of the head may be used without further inspection.
- If three insects are found, all the remaining leaves must be carefully washed and inspected before use even in the winter months.
- If one or even two insects are found, an additional four leaves from each quarter should be inspected.
- If no further insects are found in those two to three additional leaves, the rest may be used without further inspection.
- If even one more insect is found in the additional leaves, all the remaining leaves must be washed and inspected.
Throughout the years, purple cabbage was always an item that did not require inspection, but only a washing of its leaves. However, as we have seen with other produce items, the status of purple cabbage has changed, and it is now considered a produce item that should be inspected. Therefore, the steps for green cabbage should be followed for purple cabbage as well.
Steps for cleaning cabbage that will be used to make stuffed cabbage
- Freeze cabbage heads for 48 hours prior to use.
- Remove leaves from cabbage heads by thawing and peeling, or by placing the cabbage heads into a sink or bowl / pan filled with hot water. Soak the cabbage heads until the leaves easily peel apart.
- Spread out each individual leaf, exposing all crevices and folds.
- While leaf is spread out, exposing all the crevices and folds, allow a strong stream of water to wash the leaf thoroughly. Repeat for both sides of the leaf. No further inspection is necessary.