Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Cabbage Head
Today, I gathered up my courage and decided to tackle the half of a cabbage head that was lurking in my vegetable crisper. My problem with some vegetables - cabbage, beets, parsnips, potatoes... - is that they are often sold in such big amounts that I have a hard time using them all up before they start growing long sprouts or smelling funny. I may need beets or cabbage for some recipe, but then have no idea what to do with the rest. This half a head had been asking to be used up ever since I made that Ethiopian cabbage stew, but I had tried my best to ignore him and kept pushing him in the farthest back corner of the crisper. Today, I decided I either had to use the head up, or to throw it away - and, as I hate throwing food away, I decided it was to be our dinner.

 [image source]

This is one of the dishes that doesn't photograph well and looks very boring (and in fact, quite ugly), but tastes amazing. Even my boyfriend - who usually claims to be allergic to any form of cabbage (specially brussels sprouts, which he says he is deadly allergic to) - loves the dish and keeps asking why I don't make it more often. The dark, sweet molasses go perfectly with the strong cabbage, and you get your whole grains and protein in the same dish, too.

Cabbage and Lentil Casserole
  • 1/2 head of white cabbage, cut into 1-inch-pieces
  • 2 c water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic (optional; I didn't use any)
  • 3 carrots, sliced thinly
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 c lentils de Puy OR brown lentils
  • 2/3 c rice (I used brown basmati rice)
  • 1/2 to 1 tbsp blackstrap molasses*
  • 1 tbsp packed brown sugar*
  • 2 tbsp tamari (or other soy sauce)
  • 3/4 to 1 c non-dairy cream or milk (I used half rice cream, half unsweetened soy milk)
  • handful of fresh oregano, or 1-2 tsp dried oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste
Cook the lentils and rice according to package directions, and drain any excess water.

Preheat oven to 175 C (350 F), and lightly oil a casserole dish.

In a medium pot, bring the water to a boil, and add the salt and the cabbage. Reduce the heat to simmer, and let the cabbage cook for a few minutes, while you prepare the other ingredients.

Heat the oil in a large skillet, and add the onion and carrots. Cook until transculent. Add the cabbage (including the cooking liquid), lentils, rice, blackstrap molasses, sugar, tamari, and milk or cream. Taste with salt and pepper, and add the minced fresh oregano or dried oregano.

Pour the mixture into a prepared casserole dish. Bake in the lower-middle part of the oven for about one hour, until the top is brown and crispy. If desired, sprinkle or brush with a little molasses-water or soy sauce midway through the cooking (I never bother ;)).

Serve with a fresh salad and, ideally, homemade cranberry or lingonberry preserves.

*You can replace the blackstrap molasses and brown sugar with 2 tbsp regular dark molasses or 2 tbsp dark muscovado sugar.


Since the oven was warm, dessert was the first apple crisp of the year. I can hardly imagine another main course and dessert that look so much alike. ;)

This was just apples, rolled oats and oat bran, a little vegan margarine, splash of soy milk, brown sugar, blackstrap molasses, vanilla and cinnamon. The topping was vanilla soy yoghurt: the brand sold in Denmark (Alpro) is just like vanilla custard!

My boyfriend commented that the picture above looks like pork with melted cheese on top - but I hope you can see beyond that. ;) Blame the bad lighting in my kitchen. 

Good night to you all! :)
posted by Seglare at Wednesday, September 22, 2010 | Permalink |


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