Creamy Cabbage Casserole

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

food painting for the vegetarian cookbook by Fiona Morgan
Thrifty. Creamy. Hearty. Easy.


Food painting artwork

30 x 30cm oil on linen. Inspired by a Twitter comment by the design minded @reese on the innocent quality of blind contour drawing. What's that? It's a drawing practice where you keep your eye on the subject and your pencil moving and you never look at what's appearing on the page. It improves hand-eye coordination and confidence.

I hooked on the idea of using that innocent quality of simple lines and shapes on the completely weird brussel sprout plant. And so we ended up with high brow oil painting meets low brow pencil cartooning. I'm liking this hybrid. For the unaware, the brussel sprout plant is the alien of the vegetable world. When harvested, they look like this (the leaves have been cut off those spikey stalks):
Photo courtesy of Galileo55

By the way, all the food painting artwork is available to own in the Official Art Store.


The meatless meals recipe

In the spirit of finding tasty, easy and hearty things to do with the blander winter veg, I challenged myself to ‘do something’ with brussels sprouts that wasn’t just a side dish. You would not believe how many different incarnations this concept went through before landing here. The original idea was to use chestnuts as they go so well with brussels. 
After shelling, about half of our chestnuts were rotten and they can be such a time consuming pain in the behind to prepare, that they were dumped. I know when I’m cold and hungry the last thing I want to do is sit down and peel an ingredient for half an hour before I can even get started on making the meal. I am quite sure I am not alone in this sentiment. What we have here is the exact opposite. Quick to prepare and made of humble ingredients. Filling and tasty.
Oh, and it’s not actually a casserole as it never gets near the oven. Casserole just sounded tastier than stew, which rhymes with ‘ew’. Point taken?

1 tablespoon butter
1 onion, roughly diced
1 ½ green apples, chopped fine but rough
2 cups stock, possibly three
¼ cup split peas
¼ cup lentils
¼ cup rice
1 cup cooked mixed beans
125g mushrooms, chopped
350g brussel sprouts (in quarters) or cabbage (finely sliced)
½ teaspoon dried sage
300ml cream
375g potato in bite size pieces

Saute onion in butter until golden.
Add apple and a little stock, put the lid on the pot and cook the apple until it’s mashable.
Mash into a rough sauce.
Then add everything else and simmer, lid off, until all the ingredients are done. This will be around 30 minutes. Keep an eye on the amount of liquid and add extra stock to prevent sticking if necessary.

Serves 4. 
A generous amount of cracked black pepper works well on top.


More vegetarian cookbook goodies

Need help with conversions? Download this handy dandy pdf of cooking conversion charts for every cooking measuring system I could find. It should make your life easier.

Want to check out more vegetarian dinner recipes? They're all in the Table of Contents.

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