Thursday, 28 March 2013

Vegetarian Cabbage Pie

I know, the idea of cabbage pie seems a bit odd, but believe me, the end product is scrumptious. 
Sautéing the cabbage at a low temperature brings out its natural sweetness and richness. Complemented with a hearty whole wheat crust, this fiber packed pie is a great homey main. A comfort food packed with yummy goodness.

Total Time: 1h, 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30-40 minutes
Cook: 400°F

Basic Whole-Wheat Pie Crust


1 1/4 cup whole-wheat flour (or half white mix)
pinch of salt
1/2 cold margarine
3-4 tbsp ice water


Sift flour and salt into a deep bowl.
Add cold margarine, cut into small bits and cut into flour with two knives until the mixture resembles a coarse meal.
Stir in ice water with a fork and mix until dough forms a ball.
Turn onto a floured board and knead briefly.
Form into two balls, flatten with the palm of your hand and wrap in waxed paper and refrigerate for a minimum of 30 minutes.

Cabbage Pie Filling


1 large onion, diced
1 medium green cabbage, thinly sliced
olive oil to sauté
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2-4 tsp herbs, such as basil, thyme, oregano, etc.
3 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 1/2 tsp salt
pepper, to taste
3 tbsp flour2/3 cup daiya cheese (optional)
1/4 cup bread crumbs


Preheat oven to 400°F.
In a large pot or Dutch oven, sauté onions olive oil for 2 minutes, add garlic and sauté an additional minute. Add cabbage, stir and sauté covered, stirring often until wilted, about 10-15 minutes.
When cabbage beings to soften up and shrink down, add herbs, white wine vinegar, salt and pepper. 
Continue sautéing until cabbage is cooked, about 15-20 more minutes, stirring often. 
Meanwhile, roll out dough on a floured surface and line 9" glass pie plate with the bottom dough, saving the remainder for the top of the pie. 
After 15-20 minutes sprinkle cabbage with flour and stir to combine, let cook an additional 5 minutes, tasting and adjusting seasoning appropriately. 
Remove Dutch oven from heat and mix in cheese.
Pour filling into the pie shell, mounding the cabbage in the middle. Sprinkle the bread crumbs over the cabbage filling. Roll out the remaining dough to cover the pie. Crimp edges closed and prick top with a fork or knife.
Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until the top is golden.
Let cool at least 15 minutes before slicing.
Serve along side potatoes and another veg, or just enjoy it by itself.

Enjoy! -K

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Spring Sprouts!

12 hours
24 hours
36 hours
48 hours

60 hours
72 hours

84 hours
96 hours: Lunch Time!

With Spring fast approaching, its a great time to start sprouting. My currents favourites include alfalfa and chickpeas, but other varieties that are easy to grow sprouts include: fenugreek, radish, broccoli, mung beans, cabbage, mustard seeds, quinoa, lentils and pea sprouts.   
Sprouts are great on sandwiches or in salads. They taste great and they're good for you. Sprouts can be very expensive, and by growing them yourself, you can cut the costs and achieve fresher sprouts any time of year. 
My favourite sprouting method is growing sprouts in mason jars. To grow sprouts in mason jars, you will need a large glass jar, cheese cloth of mesh, an elastic, a drying rack, colander or large bowl to drain water. 
Soaking over night
Rinsed than left to drain
24 hours
To start sprouting, soak your seeds 2-4 times the amount of water, and let soak over night. In the morning, drain out the water, rinse, drain and let dry on an angle by a window. 
Rinse and drain sprouts twice daily, before bed, and in the morning works well. Harvest your sprouts within 3-7 days depending on the seed. 
Alfalfa can be ready to eat around 4 days, were as chickpeas takes even less time. For most sprouts, continue sprouting until they develop a long tail with a few green leaves. For some sprouts, such as chickpeas, quinoa, pea sprouts and mung beans and lentis, they can be eaten as soon as their tail emerges.  That being said, longer tails are commonly preferred for salads and some other raw dishes.
When these babies are ready, eat them or stick them in the fridge and keep refrigerated for up to 7 days.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Vegetable Lasagna

Wow! Am I ever stuffed. This is the best lasagna. There is something very appealing about having a lasagna that is not dripping with cheesy grease, yuck. This was my first time making a vegan lasagna, although I've made many non-vegan lasagnas with my family as well as vegan cannelloni. I was actually planning on doing manicotti with a zucchini wrapper, but Ryan wanted lasagna, so here we are! 
This lasagna has a great structure. I was surprised when I picked it up with the spatula and it didn't fall to pieces like so many lasagnas do. The reason it's so sturdy is most likely because we used both lasagna pasta and strips of zucchini, which we laid perpendicular to one another. Because we only added cheese on top, there were also no greasy layers for the pasta to slip off of. This is definitely a healthy lasagna. Layered with vegetables and tofu, it's lower in saturated fats, as well as calories and sodium, although it's probably more filling than other (non-vegan) lasagnas.

If you are not vegan and want to make this cheesier, you would be able to replace half the tofu with ricotta, just mix it in after the kale has wilted down or you could replace the Daiya on top with a nice goat cheese (which complements the flavours of the lasagna well) or with one of your favourite cheeses.

Serves: 8
Bake at: 375°F


13-15 sheets oven-ready lasagna noodles (less than a full box)
1 zucchini, cut lengthwise thinly with a mandolin
~2/3 cup Daiya vegan cheese
1 large portabello mushroom, 1/4" slices (optional)

1 brick of tofu, rinsed
1-2 cloves minced garlic
olive oil for frying
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1/2 a bunch of kale (or 1 bag of baby spinach)
2/3 cup of water
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried basil
Salt and pepper to taste

1 large onion, medium dice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium red pepper, large dice
6 crimini mushrooms, sliced 
1 16 oz can tomato chunks, in juice
1 jar (650ml, just less that 3 cups) of your favourite spaghetti sauce
salt and pepper to taste


In a shallow frying pan, simmer garlic on medium-low heat in olive oil until fragrant. 
Crumble tofu into frying pan so that it resembles ricotta cheese, and season with soy sauce and herbs.
Stir as needed to not overly brown the tofu.

Meanwhile in a large sauce pan on medium heat, sautée onions in olive oil for 2 minutes, then add mushrooms and garlic, then sautée until the mushrooms begin to brown.
Next add diced red pepper and let sautée for an additional 5 minutes before adding the tomatoes and tomato sauce.
Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 10-20 minutes.
Taste and add pepper and salt if needed.

De-stem and wash kale, then dice. Add kale to tofu filling with about 2/3 of a cup of warm water. Cover and let steam. 
The water at this step is needed to help cook the oven-ready pasta noodles. Don't worry, the end product will not be watery.
When the kale is ready, uncover, and take off heat.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

In a 9x13" pyrex dish, ladle in 1/2-1 cup sauce to cover bottom.
Layer in the first set of pasta noodles, make sure to not overlap them. 
Next add a layer of sliced zucchini, overlapping slightly. Lay the zucchini slices in the opposite direction of the pasta noodles, perpendicular to them. 
Ladle on a substantial amount of pasta sauce, about half of what is left, so that there is a thick layer of sauce.
Next, layer the second set of pasta noodles. 
On top of the noodles, add the entire tofu filling, evening it out.
Then add a second layer of zucchini slices, in the same manner as the first.
Add the third and final layer of pasta noodles.
If you have enough room, you can add another layer of zucchini here, if not skip this step.
Ladle on the rest of the sauce to cover the noodles or the zucchini.
Sprinkle on the cheese, adding more or less as desired.
Distribute the portabello slices on top of the cheeses (this will stop most of the cheese from sticking to the aluminum foil).
Cover the dish with aluminum foil, puncture a hole in the middle with a fork and form a tent in the foil.
Bake at 375°F for 40 minutes.
Remove foil, then bake for an additional 20-30 minutes.
Remove from oven and test pasta with a fork.
Let cool for 10 minutes before cutting and serving.
Serve with Ryan's No-Knead Bread.

Hope you enjoy! We did!