Scalloped cabbage

By Simon Thibault
  • Facebook
  • Tweet
  • Pinterest
  • Email
  • Print

This recipe was one of the first I tried to make out of my grandmother Rosalie’s notebooks. Beneath the list of ingredients (it was one of the few that contained instructions), was a note saying, “This can be done with any vegetable.”* Unfortunately, there was no recipe or directions for the white sauce mentioned in the recipe. 

I was gifted Rosalie’s Manuel de cuisine by my mother a few years ago. The cookbook was one of the few books she brought with her from her time in Trois-Rivières. The Manuel is more than just a cookbook; it’s a guide on how to stretch a budget, how much nutrition can be garnered from various cuts of meat, and so much more. My mother recalls that her mother often made “une sauce blanche” for dishes: a roux-based white sauce. The white sauce found here is very similar to that found in Rosalie’s Manuel, with a few additions to give it a bit more flavour.

The best kind of cabbage for this recipe is one that will keep its shape when cooked, such as hardy winter white cabbages. Check farmers’ markets or your local grocer for cabbages that are good for pickling as they tend to stand up well to this preparation.

TIP: The great thing about this dish is that you can season your white sauce in all sorts of ways. Traditionally the sauce would be made very plainly, with the nutmeg listed below or summer savoury, but feel free to play around with dried herbs such as thyme, rosemary, toasted caraway seeds, or even a small amount of grated hard cheese. Fresh mushrooms sautéed in the butter (before you add the flour) would be great as well.

SERVES
3
 TO
6
TOTAL TIME

Ingredients

  • 1 small cabbage (roughly 455 grams)
  • 1 1/2 cups white sauce
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
  • Pepper to taste

For the white sauce:

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons summer savoury
  • 1 1/2 cups whole (2%) milk

Directions

  1. Remove the core from the cabbage. Cut the cabbage into strips. 
  2. Add the cabbage to a large bowl, preferably glass or plastic. Drizzle salt on top. Mix thoroughly. Add enough water to cover the cabbage and allow to soak for about 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat your oven to 375 ̊F.
  4. Make the white sauce by heating a skillet or sauce pan over medium heat. Add the butter to the pan and sprinkle in the pepper and flour. What you want to do here is cook out the raw flavour of the flour. The butter and flour will combine easily, so make sure you keep stirring it around in the pan to ensure it doesn’t burn. Cook and stir for about two minutes.
  5. Add the salt, summer savoury, and milk. Turn down the heat to medium-low. Cook for about tem minutes, stirring often to ensure that the flour dissolves completely into the sauce.
  6. Drain the cabbage and place in a baking dish large enough so that the cabbage covers the bottom. Don’t worry if it’s a little bit snug in there.
  7. Pour the sauce over the cabbage and mix well to ensure that everything is well coated. 
  8. Cover with bread crumbs. Dust it all with nutmeg.
  9. Place in oven and bake for 25–30 minutes, or until the cabbage is cooked. It should be soft but still yield slightly to a fork. 
  10. Serve immediately.
  11. If you are using another vegetable, cooking and salting times will vary. Use your instincts and your sense of taste. 

WATCH

The Social Daily at 1pm ET on CTV

Bell Media Lifestyle Specialty Terms of Use Privacy Policy