Heat the oil in a large heavy bottomed saucepan or casserole.
Finely slice the peeled and halved onion into thin half moons and add to the pan with the salt; this will stop it catching.
Fry gently until the onion softens but doesn’t become colored.
Finely shred the cabbage — which you can do by hand or by pushing chunks through the slicing blade of the processor — and stir it into the onion in the pan layering it over the top.
Sprinkle the sugar over the cabbage, and then add the wine, orange juice and mixed spice.
Peel and core the apples, and then chop them into small pieces.
Add these to the pan, and when everything has wilted down a little carefully give the pan a stir.
Cover with a lid and cook very gently at the lowest possible heat for about 2 hours.
It really can’t be overcooked and is often better reheated and eaten the next day.
Check the seasoning when the cabbage is ready at the end, as the flavors only really come out once the vegetables have cooked down and softened.