Shaved into long, thin strands and sweated in a covered pot, cabbage becomes as luxurious as a bowl of buttered noodles. Of course, it helps to cook said cabbage in actual butter, and to add a pile of Parmesan at the end and stir furiously, thereby enrobing each cabbage noodle (coodle?) in its creamy saltiness. Use a pair of tongs to twirl the cabbage onto a plate, where the pieces will tangle and twist just like the real noodles they aren't.
Inspired by Jessica Koslow's Brussels Sprouts and Leeks Cacio e Pepe. —Sarah Jampel
4 to 6
unsalted butter, divided
leek, tough outer leaves removed, sliced thinly into half-moons, and rinsed thoroughly
In a large, heavy-bottomed pot, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter over medium-high. When it's bubbling, add the sliced leeks and season with salt. Add 1 1/2 tablespoon of water, stir everything around, then cover the pot and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 12 minutes, until the leeks are soft and melty. It's okay if they're browning a bit, too.
Add the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter and the cabbage. Season with salt and stir so that the cabbage is coated. Add another 1 1/2 tablespoons of water, then cover the pot. Cook the cabbage, stirring occasionally, until it's glistening, soft, and significantly reduced. This will takes 25 to 30 minutes.
Squeeze 1/2 lemon over top of the vegetables and add 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese and the black pepper. Stir to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Top with the remaining Parmesan before serving. Add more black pepper if you'd like, too.