Tori Amos’ brilliant Boys for Pele is 20 years old this month. Which means a few things: I’ve spent a lot of time trying to verify the truth of whether or not the pope indeed has a rubber robe, and I’m really fucking old. It seems like a lifetime ago. I lived in another state. I had a different everything. But this album holds up. Tori holds up, I don’t care what anyone says. I know she’s weird. Sometimes weird is pretty fucking rad. Anyway, her lyrics are insane, and as I listened to this album after a too-long hiatus from it, I did what I always do when good music is on and I have time: I cook. Meanwhile, since I’ve recently lost my beloved Mister Wallace dog, my cat Fawkes has turned into a total attention whore. It’s wonderful and snuggly, unless I’m not snuggling and trying to do other shit. Like cook. While I have been listening to this album and making this dish, he has been howling at the top of his lungs. Maybe he just likes Tori.
So I have spent the last month or so trying to perfect this cabbage roll recipe. Finally after making it three times and being pleased with it each time more than the last, I said FUCK IT NO MORE ROLLING CABBAGE IMMA DECONSTRUCT THIS BITCH INTO A CASSEROLE. While I got them to totally look like cabbage rolls, it’s just too hard not to break, and honestly, they’re difficult to eat like that. I’d much rather just pile shit in a bowl and eat it. America has spoken. I like vegetables. I’m guessing if you are reading this, you do too. I present:
STARFUCKER CABBAGE CASSEROLE
It’s so fucking good I want to share it with you.
SHIT YOU WILL NEED:
1 head cabbage, chopped and steamed
3 sweet potatoes, baked, skin off
1-1/2 c. mushrooms, chopped
4 c. quinoa/brown rice blend, cooked
2 med. zucchini, sauteed (optional)
1 med. onion, sauteed (optional)
2 c. Parmesan cheese, shredded
1/4 c. Italian bread crumbs
1 jar Marinara sauce (or whatever. Make your own. I’m lazy.)
thyme, fresh or otherwise
basil, fresh or otherwise
1 or 2 garlic cloves, minced
salt and pepper
(all seasoning to taste)
SHIT YOU WILL DO:
Have the cabbage cut up and steamed, just chop it kind of roughly. Discard the weird center. Bake your sweet potatoes the night before or something, because that takes an hour. You don’t want to waste precious time. In a bowl, mix the chopped mushrooms, 1 cup of Parmesan, the cooked quinoa/rice blend, and the sweet potato meat together. I just squeezed the potatoes with my hands. Satisfying. Mush it all up so it’s like a delicious paste. Saute your onion and zucchini, have it sitting off to the side. I actually add the thyme, oregano, basil, some salt and pepper, and minced garlic cloves to this saute. But you could really add all that at any time.
Preheat oven to 350. Take a 9×11 casserole dish, put a layer of cabbage and zucchini/onion (about 1/2 of it) on the bottom. then sploch the sweet potato mixture on top of that. Kind of spread it out so it makes a layer. Add another layer of the cabbage/zucchini/onion. Then cover with 3/4 of the jar of marinara sauce (about 2 cups? Maybe a little more?) Get it nice and saucy. Spread the other 1 cup of Parmesan on top. Scatter the bread crumbs on top if you want. I did. And it rocked.
Cook it for about 30-40 minutes. Everything is already cooked, all you’re doing is making it hot and cooking it all together.
Try not to punch me in the face next time you see me, because this is so good you’ll want to. ENJOY, MY VEGETABLE-EATING FRIENDS.