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Zaalouk de Chou, Zaalouk or Mderbel Mkaouar are all names for Moroccan cabbage salad with chermoula. It’s similar to a number of other salads in which cooked vegetables are smothered in chermoula during a second stage of cooking or marinating. The resulting salads are then seasoned with lemon or vinegar and served cold or at room temperature. Carrots with Chermoula and Zaalouk de chou-fleur are such variations.
The texture of the cooked cabbage in Zaalouk Mkaouar can be anywhere between roughly chopped to coarsely mashed; I prefer mashed as it absorbs more chermoula.
You can also serve the zaalouk or mderbel of cabbage as a light side dish. It can be made ahead as it will last a few days in the fridge.
Moroccan Cabbage Salad with Chermoula - Zaalouk Mkaouar
- Wash the cabbage well and cut into wedges. Discard the inner core.
- Simmer in boiling salted water until it becomes al dente. It should take about 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer the cabbage to a colander to drain.
- When cool enough to handle, use a knife or a food processor to coarsely chop the cabbage. You can decide which texture you want to serve at this point.
- Over medium heat, heat the oil in a pan. Add the chermoula, the tomato paste and the spices. Cook for 1 minute.
- Fold in the cooked cabbage, cooking and stirring for about 5 minutes to combine. (I use a spatula to break up the cabbage further and allow the chermoula to be soaked in.) Season to taste then set aside to cool.
- Once the cabbage has cooled, stir in vinegar or lemon juice to taste.
- To serve, transfer the cabbage salad to small plates, drizzle with olive oil, and garnish as desired.
- This salads keep will in the fridge for up to a week. It's ideally served at room temperature but can also be served slightly warm or cold.