I don’t want to become some crazy vegan food blogger. I’m not exactly sure why, I just don’t. I want to post New Yorker stats, but I am too lazy and have been thinking about this pie all day. Here you go:
Cabbage and onion pie, with variations
The secret to this pie is using enough oil to sauté the vegetables – if the vegetables are dry, the pie will be flavorless. Use more oil than you think you could possibly need. Use so much oil that your heart flutters a little when you see it shimmering and winking at you in the pan. Close your eyes while you just let it glug and glug and glug in, then give it one more good glug.
Fat equals flavor fat equals flavor fat equals flavor – say it with me.
Variations: Leftover mashed potatoes can be added to the filling. The tempeh can be replaced with ground seitan. Scallions, or even sage or thyme, can be substituted for chives. Chopped parsley is nice with the chives (or other herbs). For color and a fresh flavor, steamed greens can be added – kale is perfect. Roasted or sautéed mushrooms, squash, or other well-cooked root vegetables are lovely as well. Sliced, peeled, roasted broccoli stems are also good.
Make enough pie crust to line a 9″ x 13″ Pyrex casserole dish. I’m not going to give you a pie crust recipe, but I make the one in the vegan Bloodroot cookbook and that recipe is small, so I would multiply it by 4. Full disclosure: I worked on this cookbook. Full disclosure 2: I worked on it as a volunteer project, so don’t worry, you’re not giving me money if you buy it. Full disclosure 3: It’s a really fucking good pie crust recipe.
2 lbs. green cabbage, cored and cut into bite-sized pieces
½ c or so grape seed oil mixed with a little olive oil
dry sherry as needed (about 1/3 cup total)
4 medium onions, chopped
½ c sauerkraut, rinsed and squeezed dry
7 medium garlic cloves, minced
8 oz. ground tempeh (chop in food processor until ground)
small handful chives, chopped
1. Fry the hell out of the cabbage in grape seed oil until tender and lightly browned. Use sherry to deglaze when necessary. Similarly but separately, caramelize the onions, adding sauerkraut when they are almost browned. Fry a few more minutes, then add garlic and fry 1 more minute, stirring often. Deglaze with sherry. Separately, fry tempeh until lightly browned, and deglaze with sherry.
2. Combine the cabbage, tempeh, and onion and sauerkraut mixture. Add salt to taste. Let cool.
3. Line a 9” x 13” baking dish (preferably Pyrex) with the pie crust (no need to oil the pan unless your pie crust recipe is very lean and low fat, in which case just start over with a better pie crust recipe). Add filling to pan and zest the lemons over the filling. Sprinkle with the chives.
4. Roll out more pie dough and lay over the filling to make a top crust. Although I generally admire beauty in all forms, I like to pay homage to this pie’s Eastern European rustic roots and not make any attempt whatsoever to prettify the crust. The aggressive rusticity of it appeals to me.
5. Refrigerate 10 minutes or more while the oven is preheating to 400.
6. Bake pie until crust is light brown, about 50 minutes.