Thursday, November 15, 2012

Russian Vegetable Pie

Another classic dish from The Vegetarian Epicure.

Our chickens are laying a lot of eggs lately so I have been thinking about my favorite egg recipes.  This one is perfect for the fall.  It uses cabbages, mushrooms, cream cheese, and hard-cooked eggs layered in a pie crust.  It's a bit more time consuming to make than some recipes, (pie crust, cook and peel those eggs), but the flavor is great and so hearty.  Just right for a cold evening in November.

Russian Vegetable Pie

1 1/4 C flour
1 t sugar
1 t salt
4 oz softened cream cheese
3 T butter
(makes a top and a bottom crust)

1 small head cabbage (3 C shredded)
1/2 lb mushrooms
1 onion
3 T butter
4 oz softened cream cheese
4 - 5 hard cooked eggs
(to taste: basil, marjoram, tarragon, S & P)

Make a pastry by sifting together the dry ingredients, cutting the butter, and working it together with the cream cheese.  Roll our 2/3 of the pastry and line a 9-inch pie dish.  Roll out the remaining pastry and make a circle large enough to cover the dish.  Put it away to chill.

Shred a small head of cabbage coarsely.  Wash the mushrooms and slice them.  Peel and chop the onion.

In a large skillet, melt about 2 T butter.  Add the onion and cabbage, and saute for several minutes, stirring constantly.  Add at least 1/8 t. each of marjoram, tarragon, and basil (all crushed), and some salt and fresh-ground pepper.  Stirring often, allow the mixture to cook until the cabbage is wilted and the onions soft.  Remove from the pan and set aside.

Add another
T of butter to the pan and saute the mushrooms lightly for about 5 or 6 minutes, stirring constantly.

Spread the softened cream cheese in the bottom of the pie shell.  Slice the eggs and arrange the slices in a layer over the cheese.  Sprinkle them with a little chopped dill, then cover them with the cabbage.  Make a final layer of the sauteed mushrooms and cover with the circle of pastry.

Press the pastry together tightly at the edges, and flute them.  With a sharp knife, cut a few short slashes through the top crust.

Bake in a 400-degree oven for 15 minutes, then turn the temperature down to 350 degrees and continue baking for another 20 to 25 minutes, or until the crust is light brown.

Serves 4 - 6.

This is straight from the Vegetarian Epicure.  This is a great cook book by Anna Thomas, who kindly gave me permission to share it with you.  (In the process of writing this I learned that the proper procedure is to ask the author for permission, and in this case, Ms. Thomas asked that the recipe be written exactly as it is written in her cookbook.)  It is a wonderful book that has helped me for years.

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