Vegetarian Savoy Bundles

Savoy Cabbage Rolls - ResizedNearly a year ago, I posted a recipe for Beef & Feta Cabbage Rolls; my husband loves Savoy cabbage, and so here’s a vegetarian version I made this week.  It can be assembled ahead of time, and then baked before serving.  It goes well with rice, or potatoes and gravy, and a fruity red wine, or chilled white wine that goes well with cheese.

Vegetarian Savoy Bundles

1 head Savoy Cabbage

1 onion, finely chopped

~500 grams (18 ounces) mixed mushrooms (either fresh or packaged)

1/2 – 1 Cup tomato juice, apple wine, or bouillon of choice – any liquid to help it cook down

Spices to taste – salt, pepper, herbs of choice

200 gr. (7 ounces) grated cheese

breading crumbs for topping

To Prepare the Savoy:  Per person, take 2 of the outer leaves (without ripping them, though they’ll still roll if you do rip them) away from the head of cabbage; wash them, and then with a sharp knife, carefully pare away the thick stem area as thin as possible without breaking through.  Place 2-3 leaves at a time on a large plate in the microwave, and microwave on high for 1-2 minutes; remove and set aside, repeating for the amount of leaves required.  Set aside.

To Prepare the Filling:  Meanwhile, finely chop the rest of the head of cabbage, the onions, and slice the mushrooms.  In a deep frying pan, with a dash of your favourite oil (I used refined coconut oil), sauté the filling; the cabbage looks like way too much, but it will cook down – just add a bit at a time, and as it cooks down add more.  Spice to taste, adding the tomato juice as the filling cooks down.  Once the filling is cooked to your taste (you can either leave it a bit crunchy, or cook it thoroughly), set it aside.

Savoy Cabbage Rolls6 - ResizedTo Roll:  On the (still warm) pile of Savoy leaves, spoon a spoonful or more of filling into the centre of the top leaf; fold in the sides and then the ends into a “square”, and turn upside down as you place it into a casserole dish.  Repeat with the rest of the leaves.

Top with the grated cheese, and then the breading crumbs for a crunchy topping.

Bake at 200°C (400+F) for ~30-45 minutes, until the topping becomes golden brown.  In the meantime prepare your side dish of potatoes, rice, gravy, or whatever you choose.

En Guete!

Chilled Melon Soup

Add a sprig of mint to give it that "slaved all day in the kitchen" look...

Add a sprig of mint to give it that “slaved all day in the kitchen” look…

Fruit soups are very popular in northern Europe & are frequently served as dessert as well as during the main meal.  The spices give this soup a Middle Eastern flare, and it’s perfect for a hot summer lunch or dinner!

Chilled Melon Soup

1 – 2 ripe melons such as cantaloupe (muskmelon) or honeydew

2 C. milk or half – and – half

3 Tbs (45 ml) chopped fresh mint leaves, plus additional for garnish

½ tsp. (2 ml) ground coriander

4 – 6 Tbs (60 – 90 ml) plain yogurt

Peel & seed the melons. Scoop out some melon balls with a melon baller & reserve for garnish. Coarsely chop the remaining melon to make 2 to 3 C. (500 – 750 ml) of chopped meloAdd a sprig of mint to give it that “slaved all day in the kitchen” look…Add a sprig of mint to give it that “slaved all day in the kitchen” look…n. Puree the chopped melon, milk, mint leaves, & coriander in an electric blender or food processor. Strain & serve chilled, garnished with a dollop of yogurt, additional mint leaves, & the reserved melon balls.

Southwest Beef Empanada & a Homemade Taco Seasoning Mix

Photo Credit:  Betty Crocker

Photo Credit: Betty Crocker

I’ll be making these once again this week.  This recipe was originally from Betty Crocker; one of my pet peeves is product placement in recipes; this is the 21st century, and bloggers are global which means that many people do not have access to Uncle Doohickey’s Gobbers, and have no idea how much “1 package” is!  When it comes to recipe ingredients, I’m a scratchaholic.  The Bisquick is a clone recipe I’ve already posted, and here you’ll find a good recipe for taco seasoning mix; there are hundreds out there on the web, but this is one I’ve used and like.



1  lb. (450 gr.) lean ground beef

1 oz. (30 gr.) taco seasoning mix

2/3  C. water

2-3 small potatoes, finely diced

8 oz. (225 gr.) carrots, finely sliced or diced

1  Tbs. dried minced onion (or 2 Tbs. fresh, finely chopped)



4½  C. Bisquick mix 

1  C. boiling water


Heat oven to 400°F (200°C). Line a baking sheet with baking paper, or grease with butter or oil of choice.

In a pan, sauté the diced potatoes and carrots in a splash of coconut oil or olive oil a minute, then add the beef and cook, stirring occasionally, until done; drain. Stir in taco seasoning mix, the water, & onion. Reduce heat to medium; cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally.

In a bowl stir the Bisquick mix and boiling water together until a dough forms. On a surface sprinkled with Bisquick mix, roll the dough in the mix to coat; knead. Divide dough into 6 balls. Pat or roll each ball into 7-inch (18 cm) round. Place on the baking sheet. Spoon about ½ C. beef mixture onto one half of each round. Moisten the edge of each round with water and fold over the beef mixture, pressing the edges with a fork to seal. Cut 3 small slits into the top of each crust to allow steam to escape.

Bake at 400°F (200°C) for 18 to 20 minutes or until light golden brown.



In a small bowl, combine the following ingredients:


¼ tsp. onion powder

2 tsp. paprika

½ tsp. cayenne pepper

4 Tbs. flour

1 ½ tsp. powdered beef bouillon

½ tsp. sugar

3 tsp. dried chopped onion

2 ½ tsp. salt

4 tsp. chili powder

½ tsp. garlic powder


Mix well, and store in a sealed jar.  This should be enough for ~25 tacos.

Macadamia-Crusted Chicken Fingers


Macadamia nuts – if you’d like, substitute cashew nuts instead.

This is a recipe I adapted from a fish recipe, as I prefer fish in the water and not on my plate.  It’s delicious, flexible, and doesn’t really take that long to prepare.  It’s one you can get ready the evening before and let it chill until you are ready to cook.


Macadamia-Crusted Chicken Fingers

1 ½ lbs (675 gr.) chicken breasts, cut into thin strips

S&P t.t.

Flour for dredging

2 egg whites, lightly beaten

1 Tbs. milk

1 C. macadamia nuts, finely chopped and put into a wide, shallow bowl for coating

3 Tbs. coconut oil


Lemon wedges – for garnish

fresh parsley, finely chopped – for garnish


Beat the egg whites & milk together in a wide shallow bowl.  Season the chicken strips with S&P.  Dust each piece lightly with flour, then dip into the egg mixture, & roll gently in the finely chopped nuts to coat.  Refrigerate for  30 minutes to an hour (use that time to set the table, make your side dish of rice, etc).

When you’re ready to cook,  heat the oil in a large skillet over moderate heat & saute the strips for 3 to 4 minutes per side, until crisp & brown.  Garnish with lemon wedges dipped in chopped parsley & serve immediately with hot rice or side dish of your choice.

Schinken-Kaese (Ham & Cheese) Strudel

This recipe is simple, delicious, and prepared quickly.  It’s one of those meals you can throw together in minutes, and perfect for a cool evening.  The cheese you choose will determine the distinctive flavour; I tend to use a sharp cheese, such as Gruyére cheese aged in a cave, or réserve if you can’t get anything more aged.  Cheddar might have too dominant a taste, but to each his or her own!  You can always experiment!Käseschinken Strudel

Schinken-Kaese Strudel

1 Phyllo pastry dough, rectangular

2 eggs

200 gr. grated cheese of choice

1 C. cream cheese

150 gr  Ham, finely chopped

1/2 onion, finely chopped

A sprinkling each of chives, salt and pepper

A bit of cream to brush to dough

Chop the ham & onion finely, then mix the eggs, spices & cheeses into the blend.  Mound along the centre of the phyllo dough leaving the ends and sides free; wrap and press the seam together carefully, then pinch together at the ends.  Flip over, seam-side down, and brush with the cream; take a sharp knife and cut a few slits along the top of the dough to allow steam to escape.  Bake at 200°C ~20-30 minutes, until golden brown.  Serve it alone, or with either a steamed vegetable of choice, or oven fries baked on the same tray as the strudel, surrounding it (bake according to their packaging directions; it may require more or less time than the strudel, so you may need to add one or the other seperately to time it well).

Afghani Mourgh (Afghani Lemon & Garlic Chicken) with Mint Couscous

Afghani Mourgh & Mint CouscousThis is a recipe I made on Sunday, and it was delicious!  This is a great recipe for trying out the Salted Lemons, and it was a success.  If you’re like me and only come up with these glorious cooking schemes a few hours before you need it for dinner, you can skip the overnight marinating, and just get it marinating as soon as you can.  It’s a simple dish, refreshing, and a nice change of pace!

TIP:  If you don’t have any fresh mint on hand, take a bag or two of peppermint tea (after all, it’s dried mint in a bag!), tear them open and pour them in.  I used both fresh mint, and 1 bag each (for the meat, and the couscous) for the meal.

Serve this with fresh plain yogurt, and hot peppermint tea.

Afghani Mourgh (Afghani Lemon & Garlic Chicken)

2 lg Cloves garlic

1 Tbs. finely chopped Salted Lemons (OR:  ½ tsp. Salt plus Juice & pulp of 1 large fresh lemon, 3 to 4 Tbs.)

2 C. Plain, whole-milk yogurt

black pepper (amount to taste)

2 lg Whole chicken breasts, about 2 pounds (boneless and skinless).  You can either use them whole, or slice them into strips.

a small handful of fresh mint sprigs, washed and finely chopped (leaves and stem)

1/2 an onion, finely diced


Chop up the salted lemons into half-pea-sized bits.  Any juice that comes with it can be poured into the marinating bowl, and add a bit more from the preserves jar if needed.  If you haven’t yet made the salted lemons, then simply add the salt and lemon as above.  Finely chop a couple cloves of garlic, and stir all together.  For a finer mixture, mash them together with the back of a spoon until you have a paste.

Add the plain yogurt & pepper, then the chopped peppermint and onion.

Skin the chicken breasts, remove all visible fat & separate the halves, or slice as you like it.

Turn the meat into the marinade, and stir until well-coated. Cover the bowl tightly & refrigerate. If you thought of it ahead of time, allow it to marinate at least overnight, up to a day & a half. Turn when you think of it.  Otherwise, let it marinade as long as possible.

To cook, remove breasts from marinade & wipe off all but a thin film. Broil or grill about 6 inches from the heat for 6 to 8 minutes a side, or until thoroughly cooked. Meat will brown somewhat but should not char. Once the meat is slightly brown, pour in the marinade and allow it to cook down somewhat.

Serves 2-4

Mint Couscous

2 C. uncooked couscous

1/2 an onion, finely diced

a small handful of fresh mint sprigs and leaves, washed and finely chopped

2 to 2 1/2 C. boiling water


In a heat-proof bowl, pour in the uncooked couscous, then stir in the onion and mint; add salt and pepper to taste.  Pour in the boiling water, stir quickly, and cover.  When the liquid is absorbed, fluff the couscous with a fork and test; if it needs more boiling water, or flavouring, adjust accordingly.

Swiss Cholera – Oberwalliser Lauchkuchen (Valais Leek Pie)

CholeraThis traditional Swiss recipe got its dubious name most likely during the cholera epidemics of the early 19th century; unwilling to leave the house, they used what they had on hand, packing it into a pie and baking it.  An educated guess is that, especially up in the Alps where technology was slow to come and even slower to be accepted, people were baking these either in their stone or clay bread ovens.  The apples add a nice contrast to the leeks and ham, and a good cheese makes all the difference in the world!  Raclette cheese is recommended for the reason that it’s quite a creamy melting cheese, but any good-quality cheese will work as well – Appenzeller, Gruyere, Emmentaler, etc.

Swiss Cholera

1 large onion, finely diced

300 gr. Leeks (3-4 stalks), halved lengthwise and ringed

60 gr. Ham, finely chopped

Nutmeg, salt and pepper to taste

250 gr. (6-8 med.) potatoes, boiled, chopped

2 apples, peeled, cored and chopped

150 Raclette cheese, or any good cheese, grated or diced

butter and flour for the baking form

500 gr. Pie crust dough (enough for a bottom and top crust)

1 egg yolk for brushing the top dough

Traditional Method:

Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F) Prepare the vegetables.  Saute the ham, adding spices to taste, then add the onion and leek, then add the chopped potatoes and apples; stir well, remove from heat.  Just before pouring the mixture into the prepared bottom crust, mix the grated cheese into the pan well.

Butter and flour your chosen baking form (round, or casserole), and then lay the bottom crust in.  Pour in the mixture, spreading out and topping with the top crust.  Pinch the edges together, slice away any extra dough, and puncture the top dough with a knife or fork to allow steam to escape.  Brush with the egg yolk, and bake for ~35-45 minutes.

My Method:

Preheat the oven.  Instead of sauteeing the vegetables before baking, I prepare the vegetables as described in the ingredients list, then toss them together with the grated cheese and spices before pouring it all into the prepared bottom crust.  I add a wee bit of milk, but it’s not really necessary.  Top with the top crust, pinch it together and trim away the extra dough, then bake as above.  In the boiling of the potatoes, I also added a few carrots to add a bit of colour; I boiled them with the potatoes, and chopped them both to large bite-sized bits once they were cool enough to handle.

En Guete!

Prep:  30 minutes  /  Bake:  45 minutes  /  Total:  75 minutes