South Indian Cabbage with Black Mustard Seeds


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

One Good Dish

By David Tanis

Published 2013

  • About

Ordinary green cabbage can be transformed by a bright, spicy combination of Indian aromatics. This fresh-tasting stir-fry may well make you a cabbage lover in spite of yourself. It makes a great side dish, since it goes with almost everything. It’s also quite satisfying served just with plain steamed basmati rice and a spoonful of yogurt raita. You can treat Brussels sprouts the same way.


  • 2 tablespoons ghee, clarified butter, or vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon grated garlic
  • ½ teaspoon grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped serrano or other green chile
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 pound firm green cabbage, quartered, cored, and sliced ⅛ inch thick
  • Salt and pepper
  • Juice of ½ lime


Heat the ghee in a large wok or a wide skillet over medium-high heat. Add the mustard and cumin seeds and let them sizzle. When they begin to pop, add the garlic, ginger, chile, and turmeric, then quickly add the cabbage and stir to coat. Season with salt and pepper and stir-fry until the cabbage wilts slightly, about 5 minutes.

Finish with a squeeze or two of lime juice and transfer to a serving dish.