Cabbage archived thread

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Cabbage archived thread

Post  Elanor on Wed May 25, 2011 8:14 am

Cabbage

This topic serves as an archive of a thread from the Harry Potter Lexicon Forum as hosted on World Crossing which ceased operation on April 15, 2011. Elanor

Note: I added the word "archived thread" to the name of the thread because forumotion wouldn't accept "Cabbage" only (the title of the topic must be at least 10 characters long). Elanor


Lanky Lisa - Jul 14, 2007 7:33 am
Edited by Kip Carter Nov 21, 2007 12:20 am
Has anyone noticed just how much cabbage crops up in the series? It all started when my friend and I had this whole cabbage vs brussle sprouts thing. Whenever I saw cabbage, I would shout out CABBAGE. Then I read the books again and found myself shouting quite alot.

Some examples:
Mrs. Figg's house smells of cabbage
Chinese chomping cabbage
The cabbage patch
and there's more I cannot think of right now, but its true!

Cabbage is an important part of the books. I'm sure of it, just like sock, watches, and the number 12.

I edited portions of this post to correct some grammar errors and to make it easier to read. - Kip
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Cabbage (Post 1 to 41)

Post  Elanor on Wed May 25, 2011 8:15 am

Solitaire - Jul 14, 2007 11:16 am (#1 of 41)
The Weasleys' tent at the QWC apparently also smells of cabbage ... it reminds Harry of the smell in Mrs. Figg's home.

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Soul Search - Jul 14, 2007 12:49 pm (#2 of 41)

We are really getting desparate for topics to discuss. I clicked on "Cabbage" and looked forward for something new to read about!

Why not ask where all the food comes from to feed the students and staff (over a hundred house elves) at Hogwarts. That cabbage patch must be huge.

And what's with pumpkins? Is pumpkin juice really a popular drink in Britain? All I ever heard pumpkin good for is pies and Halloween decorations. In that order.

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Anna L. Black - Jul 14, 2007 12:57 pm (#3 of 41)

Well, maybe a pumpkin will be a key ingredient in something to do with the Deathly Hallows?

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zelmia - Jul 14, 2007 2:53 pm (#4 of 41)

Oh! And that's a bad miss!
Yes, we are, Soul Search. I think it's as simple as cabbage (lettuce, brussel sprouts, etc) being a good crop for temperate climate and a staple of the traditional British diet.
And it stinks, with a smell that is reminiscent of many other "stinky" smells.
No there is nothing mysterious at all about Cabbage, I'm afraid.

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Regan of Gong - Jul 14, 2007 5:18 pm (#5 of 41)

Self declared doctor of everything.
Don't worry, I maintain the same theory about ferrets, but that's just me...

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Choices - Jul 14, 2007 6:26 pm (#6 of 41)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Soul Search - "Is pumpkin juice really a popular drink in Britain?"

Probably not, but it's a heck of a good drink in JKR's wizarding world. There would be nothing magical about popping open a Coke. Pumpkin juice is just wonderful to think about. It's orange, it's cold and it comes from somthing so very associated with Halloween and witches - pumpkins. I think it's very clever.

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Solitaire - Jul 14, 2007 9:23 pm (#7 of 41)

I like carrot juice ... and I like pumpkin pie. I should think that, properly spiced and sweetened, pumpkin juice would be quite tasty!

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Luna Logic - Jul 15, 2007 12:10 am (#8 of 41)

from the other side (of the Channel)
Cabbage was discussed in the A Treasure Hunt: Looking for Literary Symbolism in HBP thread, in the part about chapter 13, I think. because the orphanage also was smelling of cabbage. Thus a parallel Mrs Cole/Mrs Figg, and Tom/Harry...
Also, perhaps, in the Alchemy's thread : round, Ourobouros symbolism?

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me and my shadow 813 - Jul 15, 2007 9:25 am (#9 of 41)

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In my wanderings, I have heard cabbage is related to Christ because the latin word for it's vegetable family is "crucif" and at the root/stem of the plant is a cross when you harvest it.

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Choices - Jul 15, 2007 10:26 am (#10 of 41)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
Edited Jul 15, 2007 11:42 am
That's interesting, Me and My. I have never heard that before.

I think cabbage is sometimes associated with poorer people because it is cheap and good for you. I think it would be economical to serve it to orphans (although Legolas says it is not mentioned in the orphanage scene - thanks Legolas!) and that people on a tight budget might buy and eat it. Mrs. Figg's house smells like cabbage and I think one of the tents Arthur borrowed from Perkins for the Quidditch World Cup smelled like cabbage.

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legolas returns - Jul 15, 2007 10:51 am (#11 of 41)

I reread the bit in the orphanage and there was no mention of cabbage.

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Solitaire - Jul 15, 2007 11:09 am (#12 of 41)

Cabbage is a cruciferous vegetable. So are broccoli, cauliflower, kale, brussels sprouts, collards, radishes, arugula, watercress ... I wonder if Mrs. Figg eats them, as well? That reminds me ... does Hogwarts ever serve these veggies? I only remember the tasty things they serve. Hm ...

Solitaire

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Phelim Mcintyre - Jul 15, 2007 11:31 am (#13 of 41)

They serve brussel sprouts at Christmas (at least) or it wouldn't be a British Christmas dinner.

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Elanor - Jul 15, 2007 11:42 am (#14 of 41)

Very interesting! There is also the fact that, in alchemical charts, the cabbage family (not only cabbage) is bound to the moon, that is to the Mercury principle, as many other characters/objects are. Amongst those characters is Luna, who wears radishes earrings... Each time, the cabbage (and the other vegetables of the same "family") symbol sheds some light on what Harry's journey is symbolically.

Another "cabbage" detail, in PoA Hagrid sends Harry, who is in the hospital wing: "a bunch of earwiggy flowers that looked like yellow cabbages" (p.137).

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me and my shadow 813 - Jul 15, 2007 12:14 pm (#15 of 41)

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Radish earrings, didn't know they were part of the 'crucif' family, yes, most interesting... (and after seeing OoP, I'm more convinced than ever that Luna and Harry would be a nice match. I know, wrong thread...

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Luna Logic - Jul 15, 2007 12:37 pm (#16 of 41)

from the other side (of the Channel)
Legolas return is right, no cabbage in the orphanage scene.
The association was made by Nathan Zimmermann in his post 1409
Nathan: • The matron of the orphanage is named Mrs. Cole, this name could be some form of an Ouroboros symbolism for the following reasons.
Cole is a variant of the word kale, which is a member of the family of vegetables that includes broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, collared greens, spring greens and cabbages.
I find it interesting that Orphanage where Voldemort spent his early childhood is administered by a woman whose name is a variation on a vegetable from the same family that includes cabbages because, during his early childhood prior to attending Hogwarts whenever the Dursley's left on an outing they left him in the care of Mrs. Figg whose house always smelt of cabbage. (Nathan Zimmermann )

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Nathan Zimmermann - Jul 15, 2007 1:32 pm (#17 of 41)

To clarify a bit I made a slight grammatical error in constructing the post that Luna Logic quoted above:

The matron of the orphanage is named Mrs. Cole, this name could be some form of an Ouroboros symbolism for the following reasons. Cole is a variant of the word kale, which is a member of the family of vegetables that includes broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, collared greens, spring greens and cabbages.

I find it interesting that Orphanage where Voldemort spent his early childhood is administered by a woman whose name is a variation on a vegetable from the same family that includes cabbages because, during his [Harry's] early childhood prior to attending Hogwarts whenever the Dursley's left on an outing they left him in the care of Mrs. Figg whose house always smelt of cabbage.

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Choices - Jul 15, 2007 2:01 pm (#18 of 41)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
I think that is what I was remembering, Nathan, and why I thought cabbage was associated with the orphanage.

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Chemyst - Jul 29, 2007 5:54 pm (#19 of 41)

"Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up." A.A. Milne
More on Cole from wikipedia:

The term, "cole slaw", arose in the 18th century as a partial translation from the Dutch term "koolsla", a shortening of "koolsalade", which means "cabbage salad". It was commonly called cold slaw in England until the 1860s when "cole" (meaning cabbage) was revived. "Cole" originates from the Latin, colis, meaning "cabbage", and is the origin of the Dutch word as well.
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Orion - Sep 22, 2007 7:55 am (#20 of 41)

Smelling of cabbage is really just a synonym for poor. I have read it numerous times in novels whenever a shabby block of flats is mentioned. It's a quick way of describing a neighbourhood, person or place. Over-interpreters Anon are riding again!

Pumpkin juice always bothers me when I read it because it must taste so blood-curdlingly awful. IMO, the only way to eat pumpkin without throwing up is a creamy pumpkin soup with lots of ginger, curry and red pepper and a generous amount of creme fraiche, that is to say, spiced so intensely that you don't taste the pumpkin any more. If anybody has a decent recipe for pumpkin pie, please post it here!

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Solitaire - Sep 27, 2007 9:15 pm (#21 of 41)

Well, Orion, our family LOVES pumpkin pie and pumpkin custard; they are among our favorite fall/winter desserts. I make mine with soy milk, eggs or EggBeaters, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, and a bit of Splenda ... although you can use whole eggs and milk or cream and real sugar.

I'm sure that any pumpkin juice served by Hogwarts is properly pasturized, sweetened, and appropriately spiced!

As for cabbage .. I prefer it au naturel and shredded in salads, tostadas, tacos, etc. I don't like cooked cabbage very much. I will eat cabbage rolls stuffed with meat and other goodies, and a bit of cabbage in soups or stews is acceptable. But cooked cabbage as an actual dish? Not for me, thanks.

Solitaire

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Orion - Sep 28, 2007 7:14 am (#22 of 41)

I'll try it out as soon as I have found out what a Splenda is.

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PeskyPixie - Sep 28, 2007 7:55 am (#23 of 41)

Splenda is a sugar substitute. It's supposed to 'taste like sugar because it's made from sugar'.

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Choices - Sep 28, 2007 8:35 am (#24 of 41)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
My Mom used to cook cabbage for us and I love it. She boiled it with salt, pepper and a little butter and then drained it before serving. We liked it with a little catchup on it.

As for pumpkin, I always thought iced pumpkin juice sounded yummy. I like pumpkin pie, but I usually add a bit of mincemeat to my pumpkin mixture and I once made a really good refrigerator pumpkin pie - pumpkin pie filling mixed with french vanilla ice cream and poured into a graham cracker crust - refrigerate and serve topped with whipped cream. Really good.

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Steve Newton - Sep 28, 2007 9:21 am (#25 of 41)

Librarian
Catchup? On cabbage? I have never heard of that. I use lots of vinegar.

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Choices - Sep 28, 2007 9:30 am (#26 of 41)

*Completely Obsessed With Harry Potter*
LOL Most people have the same reaction to catchup on cabbage, but it is quite good. We do put a little vinegar in the cooking water.

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PeskyPixie - Sep 28, 2007 10:08 am (#27 of 41)

Chopped up and sauteed with spices, in stir-fries or coleslaw are the only ways I can handle cabbage ... I can't stand it once it goes all soft (I dissect cabbage rolls and eat the centre; it really annoys my mom and she hasn't made any in a long time)!

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journeymom - Sep 28, 2007 10:26 am (#28 of 41)

Cabbage- core most of the thick, white stem from a head of cabbage, slice into wedges, saute in an inch or two of the broth from your St. Patrick's Day spiced corned beef. Serve with a dollop of sour cream on each wedge, and a sprinkle of dill. It's so good!

Red cabbage shredded, sautéed with sliced apples and onion (and I think vinegar). Really yummy!

I love cabbage. It's all good.

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Madam Pince - Oct 2, 2007 10:55 am (#29 of 41)

The eyes are the windows to the soul...
Vegetable soup is absolutely worthless without some cabbage thrown in there, in my opinion.

That being said, I think the earlier post was right in that JKR uses cabbage to connote a more lower-class atmosphere. It's an inexpensive food, and it definitely has a distinctive smell. Goes well with the whole "poor people live here" thing.

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kaykay1970 - Oct 3, 2007 6:54 am (#30 of 41)

Living in the South it is not uncommon to eat boiled cabbage occasionally. So my take on the house that always smells like cabbage is a bit different. I've known many "little old ladies" that this applies to:

I see Mrs. Figg as a woman that at one time may have had a large family to feed. The kids have all grown up and don't visit as much as she would like. She still cooks large inexpensive meals (cabbage, corn bread and white beans, LOL) in the hopes that the children (or anyone really) will drop by and give her a bit of company. Once she does have someone to talk to she drones on and on about the cats, because they are the only real company the poor dear has.

She reminds me of a lady that used to live across the road. She would call and invite me over. She either talked endlessly about her children when they were younger; or else show me the many, many things that she has knitted over the years....

Of course I could be completely wrong. (LOL) Maybe she just cooks cabbage to cover up the smell of the kitty litter box.

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Phelim Mcintyre - Oct 3, 2007 10:20 am (#31 of 41)

Also cabbage is very economical as a large cabbage last a number of meals compared to cauliflower or brocolli.

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Madam Pince - Oct 3, 2007 12:31 pm (#32 of 41)

The eyes are the windows to the soul...
Maybe she just cooks cabbage to cover up the smell of the kitty litter box.

***falls off chair laughing...***

Mmmmmm... white beans and cornbread.... MMMMmmmmmm! I would make that once a week if Mr. Pince didn't despise white beans.

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Orion - Oct 3, 2007 1:03 pm (#33 of 41)

Cabbage is so underrated. I love red cabbage, white cabbage, sauerkraut, savoy... (I looked the names up in the dictionary.) With roux and a bit of vinegar! Can we turn this thread into a cooking thread?

Orion, Born To Cook

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Potteraholic - Oct 5, 2007 6:32 pm (#34 of 41)

"Plenty of courage, I see. Not a bad mind either. There's talent - and a nice thirst to prove yourself ..." (PS/SS)

That being said, I think the earlier post was right in that JKR uses cabbage to connote a more lower-class atmosphere. It's an inexpensive food, and it definitely has a distinctive smell. Goes well with the whole "poor people live here" thing. Madame Pince

This may have been mentioned already, but another example of how cabbage is used to show a person of limited means is in 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory'. All Charlie and the Bucket family seem to eat is cabbage: cabbage soup, boiled cabbage, and still more cabbage soup.

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Chemyst - Oct 13, 2007 6:47 pm (#35 of 41)

"Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up." A.A. Milne
I don't know how popular peanut butter is outside the US, but when I was little, every summer my mom used to make us peanut butter sandwiches except she would use cabbage leaves in place of the bread. They were very good. We'd pack them for picnics in our tree house. We kids were supposed to believe that peanut butter on cabbage would not attract as many ants to our picnic as bread. . . . we usually ate lunch too fast to test that out, but I suspect she was trying to trick us into eating more vegetables.

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PeskyPixie - Oct 13, 2007 8:09 pm (#36 of 41)

I suspect it's sort of like celery stalks stuffed with peanut butter. Peanut butter is popular here in Canada as well, but pretty much banned from public schools due to the high rate of life-threatening allergies to it.

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severusisn'tevil - Oct 19, 2007 10:16 pm (#37 of 41)

Don't forget boiled potatoes and bread and butter. It's only after Charlie's father loses his job as a toothpaste-cap screwer at the factory that they pretty much go entirely onto cabbage soup and slowly starve to death until Charlie finds his Golden Ticket.

I don't think cabbage is particularly relevant, though. I mean, it sounds a bit awful to say it, and surely my English teacher would have my head for saying it, but, uh, I really don't think that cabbage is sending a message. I am at present trying my own hand at long fiction, and you know what, it is really hard to incorporate things like cabbage, or socks, or other random things into the story. I mean, honestly, things that emerge usually do by accident. I read a really hilarious book called "Robert's Rules of Writing" and he puts it very well. Authors write stories, not symbols and themes. Those emerge on their own. Thinking that authors begin with an elaborate blueprint is usually untrue. A book is not an Erector Set. (I'm paraphrasing.)

Either that or she chose something random and used up a lot of effort to make us wonder. Hmmmm, does cabbage MEAN something? ...

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Phelim Mcintyre - Oct 20, 2007 1:18 am (#38 of 41)

Also most kids don't like cabbage so a diet of cabbage soup is a symbol of how pityful Charlie Bucket's life is.

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PeskyPixie - Oct 20, 2007 12:17 pm (#39 of 41)

Cabbage Patch Kids are in vogue once again! Their first reign took place when I was in kindergarten. The same can be said for Care Bears, but as this is a cabbage thread ...

Seemingly normal people would stampede to get their paws on one before the shipment was depleted! I still remember the security personnel (to hold back rabid parents!) on the day I went to 'adopt' my first Cabbage Patch Kid ... but she didn't make me like cabbage any better.

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Solitaire - Oct 20, 2007 6:08 pm (#40 of 41)

I remember my sister telling me about grown women fighting over a CP doll in Toys-R-Us ... or was it a Teddy Ruxpin? I can't remember now.

Solitaire

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PeskyPixie - Oct 22, 2007 11:56 am (#41 of 41)

Solitaire, I was never into Teddy Ruxpin, but I can confirm your sister's story about Cabbage Patch Kids. It was utter chaos, but now one of my fondest childhood memories.
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