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!

Vegetarian Lasagna

It’s been years since I’ve made traditional meat-based lasagna; currently we eat basically vegetarian because the young woman living with us is vegetarian, and it’s practical and healthy; there are so many great alternatives out there on the market today that meat really isn’t necessary to any dish – it’s just a matter of preference.  Here’s my recipe for vegetable lasagna; it can be made with ground beef by the carnivores or ground Quorn by the vegetarians, or with neither… the vegetable mixture is so good that you won’t miss meat!

Quorn Lasagne 2Veggie Lasagna

Meat(less) Mixture:

~450 gr. ground Quorn or ground beef (either are optional)

1 onion, peeled & finely chopped

1 aubergine (eggplant), diced into small cubes

1 zucchini, diced into small cubes

1 tin of stewed, chopped tomatoes

Italian spices, salt and pepper to taste

Prepare the vegetables; sauté the onion in a bit of your usual oil – I use either olive oil or coconut oil.  Stir in the rest of the ingredients, and cook until the aubergine and zucchini are nearly done.  Set aside while you make the sauce.

Pre-heat the oven now to 200°C (400°C) and put the oven rack on the lower to middle rungs.

 

Bechamel Sauce with Cheese:

1/2 C. Pre-made Bechamel Sauce

~2 C. milk (or more)

200 gr. grated cheese (your choice)

Place the sauce mixture in a sauce pan, and with a whisk, whisk in  ~1/4 C. milk to a smooth paste.  Bring gradually to a boil, stirring constantly and gradually adding milk.  The flour in the mixture will thicken gradually.  When the sauce has reached a good consistency – a bit thick, not soupy – stir in the grated cheese and remove from the stove.  If you feel you’ve not made enough sauce for 2 layers of lasagna, you can add a bit of Ricotta cheese, stirring it in well, to expand the amount of sauce.

Additional Ingredients:

Lasagna noodles (dry; not necessary to pre-boil them)

200 gr. grated cheese

~1/2 C. breading crumbs

To Layer:

Spoon 1/2 of the meat(less) mixture into the base of a rectangular oven-proof deep glass dish, spreading to coat the bottom of the dish.  Top with a layer of lasagna noodles (single-layer, not overlapping); spread 1/2 of the bechamel sauce over the noodles, covering all the way to the edges.  Repeat these layers once more.  Sprinkle the top with grated cheese, and then top with a sprinkle of the breading crumbs.  Bake at 200°C (400°F) for ~30-40 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.

If you like wine, serve with a red wine such as Pinot Noir for a robust taste, or Chianti for a slightly fruitier addition.