Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Party Food (alas, no pictures): Part I

The other day I had lots of beautiful ladies of all shapes and sizes over here for a clothes swap, and had to serve them something to eat.

The original concept was of finger foods, but then things got complicated; some of the stuff I was planning to make required vegetables which were unavailable from our Chubeza delivery, and some of the ingredients simply called to make them into something else. Eventually I settled on a different, but fun, menu, and it got rave reviews from the ladies.

So here it is, for your cooking pleasure; part I includes recipes for cabbage rolls and stuffed mushrooms. Tune in tomorrow for stuffed zuccini.

Shavuot Cheese Suffles (see below)

Cabbage Rolls with Quinoa

This one, in its meat version, is an old Mennonite favorite, and Chad's family has been eating it for years. Chad and I have been working on a vegetarian version, and recently we discovered that a combination of quinoa and lentils for the filling works wonders. The following version, however, has only quinoa - but is equally delicious.

1 white cabbage
1 cup quinoa
1 onion
5-6 cloves of garlic
3 tbsp of rosemary, or herbs-de-provence, or any other mixed herb
2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1-2 cups of your favorite homemade tomato sauce

In a pot, fry up the onion and garlic. Add the quinoa and herbs, and 2 cups vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then lower the temperature, cover pot and cook for about 20 minutes. Drain any excess broth and set aside.

In another pot, place cabbage in water. Bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes, or until cabbage becomes slightly translucent and leaves are soft. Drain and let cool.

Using a small, sharp knife, remove the core of the cabbage. Then, carefully peel each leaf at a time (this requires practice), and remove the white tough middle of each leaf (so the leaf remains complete, but can be easily bent).

Heat up your oven to 180 degrees celsius. Pick a nice, deep, wide baking dish and oil it lightly with olive oil. Pick up every cabbage leaf, and using a spoon, place a healthy spoonful of the quinoa mix in each leaf. Fold the sides and roll all the way. Place in baking dish. The idea is to put the leaves in the dish quite snugly. When the dish is full and you've run out of usable cabbage, mix the tomato sauce with the broth and pour on top of the cabbage. Put in oven and bake for 45 minutes.


25 champignon mushrooms
3 large potatoes
1/2 onion
olive oil
black pepper and chili flakes to taste

Carefully remove stems from all mushrooms. Chop up the stems and the onion, and fry in olive oil until brown and fragrant. Meanwhile, bake, boil or microwave the potatoes. Mash'em with the stems and onion. Then, stuff some of the mash into each stemless mushroom, place in a lightly-oiled baking dish, and put into a hot oven (200 degrees celsius would work) for about half an hour (or more, if you really want a crispy top).


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