Monday, November 3, 2014

Warming Sweet Potato, Cabbage and Black Bean Vegan Casserole

Aren't sweet potatoes the most pleasing things? Comforting, soft, warm, bland but not tasteless. And they come in different colors, I got orange ones and white ones with purple skins for this recipe. They look stunning in alternating rows. This recipe takes just a bit of roasting, and is so pretty presented on the table. I made a southwestern inspired casserole here, some chipotle, some wine, some beans. All the good stuff. 

Savoy cabbage waits next to a bowl of sliced sweet potatoes tossed in olive oil, salt, pepper, sage and mexican oregano. This way they are nicely coated with oil to brown up in the roasting of the casserole process.

One head of savoy cabbage is sliced up into roughly 1/2" - 1" wide pieces. Rustic is ok! White wine, olive oil, and a sprinkling of chipotle powder are added into the pan for flavor. Lets begin the roasting, 350°.

Look, after 15 minutes or so in my convection oven the cabbage is won over. Wilted into silky strips, with charred tips which say lots of flavor.

The sweet smokey cabbage is placed in the bottom of my most beloved baking pan. (Anthropologie makes the craziest dish-ware, I love it!)
What is a casserole anyway? Instead of describing the food, its comes from the French word for the pan itself, used in both the oven and serving of the food. Casserole meaning both the very cool cookware one receives as awesome wedding gifts, and of the vegetables layered inside of it. Clearly casseroles have an image problem in popular culture, but I have no problem with them. I think anything baked together is probably better than baked alone!

Spoon a layer of black bean on top of the cabbage. Next time I make this casserole I will experiment in putting the beans at the bottom and cabbage on top of them. I feel it would make the beans more succulent. You could try it either way. So, about beans, I made mine using a dried heirloom variety, soaking and then cooking in my pressure cooker for 20 minutes. You can use black beans or pinto beans out of a can, that is easy. Remember to rinse them.

Sprinkle some chipotle on top of the beans if you are in the mood. Next comes the very fun part. Craft time with food! Arrange the slices of sweet potato in scolloped rows, alternating by color.

Bake entire cassarole in a 350° oven for 30 - 45 minutes. Crisped sweet potatoes and warmed through.

The potatoes retain their color difference after roasting, although I lack a really good photo because the evening lighting in my house is lacking and it didn't look pretty the next day. We had devoured it and it was a mangled mess of leftovers. We will make do with this one until I make this again!  Or you make it and send me the photo perhaps?

It was really impressive looking. Dinner party or pot luck worthy. Even Thanksgiving perhaps? We ate it along with salad and mustard on top. It served about 6  portions that way. Next time Ill take better measurements in the kitchen, but honestly it was really good, just wing-it, you can't go wrong.

Warming Sweet Potato, Cabbage and Black Bean Vegan Casserole

4-6 sweet potatoes
1 savoy cabbage
1 1/2 cups cooked pinto or black beans
1 teaspoon dry sage
1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
olive oil
salt pepper
1/3 cup white wine
1 teaspoons chipotle powder

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