Stuffed Cabbage Leaves

  • 2 lb. green cabbage
  • 4-5 Tbs. butter
  • 1/2 c. finely chopped carrots
  • 1/2 c. finely chopped celery
  • 1/2 c. finely chopped onions
  • 1/2 lb. thinly julienned ham
  • 1 Tbs. chopped garlic
  • 1 c. thinly sliced onions
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 c. fresh bread crumbs
  • 1/2 tsp. rosemary
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 3 c. hot chicken broth
  • 1 Tbs. flour (optional)
  • 1/4 c. sour cream (optional)

Core cabbage, but keep it whole.  Blanch for 6 minutes or steam for 10-12 minutes (see note at end).   Cool slightly.  Remove the 12 best-shaped, largest leaves.  Trim ribs so that they are the same thickness as the leaves and can be easily bent.  Finely shred the rest of the cabbage.   Melt 3 Tbs. of the butter in a sauté pan and cook celery, carrots, chopped onions and 1 cup of shredded cabbage for 10 minutes, until wilted but not brown.  Add ham and garlic; cook five more minutes.  Place in a bowl and let cool.

Meanwhile, in the same pan, melt 1 Tbs. butter and sauté remaining shredded cabbage and sliced onions for 5 minutes.  Strew them in the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.  Beat the egg and combine with the vegetable and ham mixture, the crumbs, and rosemary.  Season with pepper (salt is usually unnecessary because the ham is salty).

Place a heaping tablespoon (or more) of filling on each leaf.  Fold over the ribbed end of the leaf, then fold over the two sides and roll up.  Place in baking dish, the flap side down.  When all leaves are stuffed, pour the hot broth over them.  Cover loosely with parchment paper or aluminum foil, and bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for 40 minutes, basting occasionally.  Serve with just the pan juices or make a light sauce: melt 1 Tbs. butter in sauté pan, stir in flour and cook for 2 minutes; pour in the pan liquids; bring to a boil, then simmer to thicken lightly; stir in sour cream and reheat without boiling.

You can replace the ham with ground beef that has been lightly sautéed and drained of fat.  Do not sauté with vegetables.

NOTE: I froze the cabbage whole a few days prior to making this dish.  Remove from freezer in the morning and by evening the leaves will peel off as if they had been blanched.  The center of the cabbage can turn brown however, so I used less in the stuffing.

From The Victory Garden Cookbook by Marian Morash.  Tip on freezing from New Recipes from Moosewood.

Steamed Fresh Vegetables and Tofu with Soba Noodles

  • 1 ½ lb. broccoli
  • 2 large carrots (optional)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 12-15 large mushrooms
  • ¾ lb. firm tofu
  • 8 oz. uncooked soba noodles
  • 4 Tbsp. yellow, Hatcho or barley miso
  • 6 Tbsp. almond butter
  • 1 1/1 cup boiling water

To make the miso-almond sauce, place miso and almond butter in a medium-sized bowl.  Add a small amount of hot water (about ½ cup) and mash with a spoon until it becomes a uniform paste.  Add remaining water and mix until well combined.  Cut broccoli into 2-inch spears.  Slice optional carrots into ¼ inch thick slices.  Cut onion or leek into 1 inch cubes.  Quarter the mushrooms.  Cut tofu into 1-inch cubes.  Get two pans of water boiling.  Steam vegetables over one while boiling soba noodles in the other.  Both soba and vegetables should be ready in 6-8 minutes, depending on your taste.  Drain noodles, transfer to a bowl, add about ½ cup of miso-almond sauce and mix well.  Serve vegetables on top od lightly sauced noodles.  Ladle additional sauce over vegetables and top with toasted cashews or almonds if desired.

Serves 4.

From Still Life with Menu Cookbook by Mollie Katzen.

Rutabaga and Carrot Soup

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbs vegetable oil
  • 3 small carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cups rutabaga, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup stock or water
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 cups orange juice
  • black pepper to taste

Sauté onion in oil for 5 minutes until translucent.  Add chopped vegetables and salt.  Sauté 10 minutes stirring occasionally.  Add stock and cook covered on low heat for 20 to 30 minutes.  Add spices.  In a blender, puree the soup with orange juice until smooth and thick.  Season with black pepper.

Makes 4 cups.

From Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant.

Russian Soured Cabbage

  • 2 Tbs. pickling salt
  • 5 Lbs. fresh cabbage
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 1 apple cored and sliced into 16ths
  • ¾ cups cranberries
  • 2 Tbs. chopped dill

Reserve 2 outer leaves of cabbage and shred remaining head.  Grate carrots coarsely.  In a large bowl, mix the salt with the shredded cabbage, rubbing the salt into the cabbage with your hands.  Gently mix in the carrots, apple, cranberries and dill.  Pack the mixture into a 1-gallon jar pressing the cabbage down firmly.  Add any liquid that may have accumulated in the bowl.  Lay the reserved cabbage leaves on top.  Dissolve 1 ½ Tbs. salt in 1 qt. water.  Push a freezer into the mouth of the 1-gallon jar and fill it with the salt water.  Seal the bag.  Set the jar in a spot out of direct sunlight (ie western Oregon)  at a temperature of 65-72 degrees F.  Two or three times a day during the next two or three days push the handle of a wooden spoon to the bottom of the jar to allow gasses to escape.  Let the mixture ferment 4-5 days until the cabbage is as sour as you like.  Store in the refrigerator.

Makes approx. 3 quarts.

Adapted from The Joy of Pickling, by Linda Ziedrich.

Russian Cabbage Borscht

  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 1/2 c. chopped onion or leek
  • 4 c. stock or water
  • 1 1/2 c. thinly sliced potato
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 c. thinly sliced beets
  • black pepper
  • 1 large sliced carrot
  • 1/4 tsp. dill weed
  • 1 stalk chopped celery (optional)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. vinegar
  • 3 c. chopped cabbage
  • 1 c. tomato puree
  • 1 scant tsp. caraway seeds
  • sour cream for topping

Begin cooking onions or leek in butter in a large kettle. Add caraway seeds and salt and cook until translucent. Add celery, carrots, potatoes, beets and cabbage. Add water and simmer slowly for 45 minutes. About 15 minutes before serving add pepper, dill weed, vinegar, and tomato puree. Taste to correct seasoning. Serve topped with sour cream.

From the Moosewood Cookbook.

Roasted Carrots with Garlic and Thyme

  • 1 ½  Lbs carrots, peeled
  • 10 – 12 small garlic cloves
  • 2 Tbs Olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • thyme sprig
  • chopped parsley, for garnish

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Cut carrots into 1-2 inch pieces, toss with oil, then season with salt and pepper.  Put them in a roomy baking dish with the unpeeled garlic and thyme sprig.  Add 2 Tbs of water, cover tightly with aluminum foil, and bake until tender, 25-45 minutes.  Check at least twice to make sure there is moisture in the pan and stir the carrots gently.  Toward the end, remove foil and continue roasting until liquid is reduced and the carrots are browned.  Serve garnished with parsley.

Note:  The unpeeled garlic cloves can be squeezed to remove the creamy garlic, which can be used as a spread on bread or mixed with the carrots for a stronger garlic flavor.

Adapted from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison.

Poultry Pot Pie with Biscuit Topping

  • 3 cups diced turkey or chicken
  • 3 ½ cups broth (chicken or vegetable)
  • 1 medium celeriac
  • 2 Tbs butter
  • 4 carrots
  • 1 onion
  • 1 leek
  • 4 med. potatoes
  • stems and leaves of 1 celeriac, chopped fine
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 2 Tbs corn starch
  • ¼ cup water
  • thyme and parsley (optional)
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 Tbs baking powder
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup parsley
  • ¼ lb butter, chilled
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup milk

Peel celeriac and dice along with carrots, onions and potatoes.  Sauté in butter in large skillet until brown.  Add chicken broth, salt and pepper.  Reduce heat and simmer uncovered until potatoes are tender.  Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.  In a small bowl, stir the cornstarch into the water leaving no lumps.  Gradually stir it into the simmering broth and stir until the broth thickens.  Add meat, chopped celeriac stems and leaves, thyme and parsley.  Remove from heat.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.  Prepare crust by sifting together 2 cups flour, baking powder and salt.  Stir in parsley.  Cut butter into flour and work until mixture forms pea sized pieces.  Make a well in the center and pour the milk and eggs into it.  Using a fork, mix the liquid and flour just enough to make a soft dough.  Dust the work surface with flour and pat the dough into a 3 x 12 rectangle ½ inch thick.  Fold the dough into 3rds starting with the short side.  Pat the dough back to its original rectangle and fold into 3rds from the long side.  Repeat twice and end by forming a 9x 12 rectangle.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer the filling to a 9 x 12 baking dish.  Pour in enough of the liquid remaining in the pan to cover the turkey and vegetables.  Top with the blanket of biscuit dough.  Bake until crust is browned and baked through (12-15 minutes).

Adapted from Down to Earth by Georgeanne Brennan.

Portuguese Kale Soup

  • 6-8 kale leaves
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 lb. potatoes
  • 2 Tbs. butter
  • 1 lb. chicken sausage
  • 2 qts. vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 c. chopped onions
  • 2 c. tomato sauce
  • 1/2 c. chopped carrots
  • 1 1/2 c. cooked kidney beans
  • 2 tsp. chopped garlic
  • salt and pepper

In a large pan, sauté onions, carrots, and garlic in oil and butter, cooking until softened, about 5 minutes. Add broth and peeled and chopped potatoes. Simmer, partially covered for 15-20 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked. Mash potatoes against the side of the pot (or puree with some of the broth and return to pot). Stir in tomato sauce and beans and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Add sautéed sausage and kale leaves cut into strips. Cook 5-10 minutes longer and season to taste.

Adapted from The Victory Garden Cookbook by Marian Morash.

Polenta with Braised Root Vegetables

Start the polenta before you begin the braised vegetables. By the time the polenta is ready, you’ll have a wonderful topping and a comforting winter meal.

  • 1 cup polenta
  • 1 scant teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 pound rutabaga, peeled and cut in small dice
  • 1/2 pound carrots, peeled and cut in small dice
  • 1 medium parsnip, peeled, cored and cut in small dice
  • 1 large or 2 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice or crushed tomatoes
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter or oil a 2-quart baking dish. Combine the polenta, salt and water in the baking dish. Place in the oven on a baking sheet. Bake 50 minutes. Stir in the butter, and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes until the polenta is soft and all of the liquid has been absorbed. Stir in the cheese, if using. While the polenta is baking, cook the vegetables. Heat the oil in a large, heavy nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until it begins to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the carrots, rutabaga and parsnip, and then season with salt. Cook, stirring often, until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, and stir together for about a minute until fragrant. Stir in the tomatoes with their liquid, a pinch of sugar and salt to taste. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, for 15 minutes until the tomatoes are cooked down and fragrant. Add lots of freshly ground pepper, taste and adjust salt, and remove from the heat. Serve the polenta with the vegetables spooned on top.

Mirepoix

Mirepoix, raw, roasted, or sauteed with butter or olive oil, is the flavor base for a wide variety of dishes such as stocks, soups, stews and sauces.

1 cup diced onions

1/2 cup diced carrot

1/2 cup diced celeriac

Try to dice vegetables to a uniform size. You can dice into larger pieces for a longer-cooking recipe, smaller for a shorter cooking time. The diced vegetables can be sauteed in olive oil or butter over relatively low heat until starting to brown. A littlle tomato sauce can then be added if desired.