Rebecca’s Recipe of the Week: A Comforting Winter Meal

February 14, 2019 by General Administrator

Spiky mustard and capers bring a little bite to the smooth, roasted squash, the crispy cabbage and unctuous cheese. A topping of crunch breadcrumbs finishes things off. You’ll feel properly nourished with this one-dish meal.
Anna Jones describes this dish as having ‘simple British flavours’. That set me thinking about the origin of the ingredients. Caraway and mustard seeds have been eaten in Britain since the Middle Ages, but squash didn’t reach these shores until the sixteenth century, when European sailors brought it back from the Americas, together with tomatoes, chile peppers, and much more, including (of course) potatoes. Savoy cabbages—‘Savoy coleworts’ as they were called in one English herbal—probably reached England from Holland around the same time.

Cheesy Roasted Savoy Squash with Crispy Breadcrumbs
Serves 4

Ingredients
For the Veg

About 800g squash or pumpkin
About 400g Savoy or other cabbage
Olive oil
2 teaspoons caraway seeds
50g dry bread (ideally rye)—about 2 thin slices—or use chunky breadcrumbs if you have some to hand
2 tablespoons capers
100g sharp cheese such as cheddar, crumbled

For the Dressing
1 tablespoon wholegrain mustard
1 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
3 tablespoons olive or rapeseed oil

Preparation
Preheat the oven to 220C.

Remove the seeds from the squash or pumpkin and slice into 2cm-thick wedges. Peel the slices if that’s what you prefer. Cut the cabbage into 8 chunky wedges.

Place both on a large oven tray and sprinkle with salt, pepper, olive oil and the caraway seeds. Spread them out so they will crisp up in the oven. You don’t want them to steam in a big heap.

Roast for about 35 minutes, until the squash is soft and the cabbage is golden and crisp and charred a little at the edges.

Meanwhile, make the caper breadcrumbs. Wizz the bread in a food processor to reduce to chunky, rough breadcrumbs. You don’t want a fine powder. Place the crumbs on a baking tray, drizzle with oil, and toss with the capers, salt and pepper. Toast in the oven for about 5 minutes or until they look pleasingly crunchy. Watch out that they do not burn. Set aside.

Make the dressing by shaking all the ingredients together in a jar. Season to taste with salt and pepper and set aside.

To serve, tumble the squash, cabbage and cheese on a platter. Drizzle with the dressing and toss. Top with the breadcrumbs and bring to the table.

Recipe adapted from Anna Jones, The Modern Cook’s Year (2017).

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