The Vegetarian and the Carnivore

My culinary adventures (for they are many and varied) twist and turn between the needs of me (a complete meat freak) and my wife (a vegetarian with pescatarian tendancies). What’s good for the goose is good for the gander, no?

Anyway, where possible I try to recreate vegetarian versions of meaty creations. Here I tried a Vegetarian Cobbler. I thought I had already done a beef version on this blog but I can’t find it so I guess that will be a follow up. This veggie version is so wholesome and nutritious its like Mother Teresa got together with the Virgin Mary, invited Florence Nightingale round and they decided this was the best thing to bring to a Pot Luck Party.

The red wine has no place in the ingredients and yet its essential to the creation process

To create Vegetable Cobbler you’ll be needing:

  • Carrots
  • Swede
  • Onion
  • Parsnips
  • Peas
  • Bay leaf
  • Mixed herbs
  • Stock (I use cubes but if you want to do it right you need to follow Stefan’s method – he’s a bit more professional!)
  • Pearl Barley
  • White wine

For the cobblers

  • Vegetarian suet
  • Flour
  • Water

First thing get a bloody big knife and hack the hell out of the vegetables, starting with the swede. Different countries call it different things but in the end it’s big, round and purple. Go figure.

Once all the vegetables are chopped up fry them in butter or olive oil in a Dutch Oven (the orange thing is a Dutch Oven isn’t it? – I mean I don’t really know whether it is or not).

Add some pearl barley – not too much because those little beads blow up and take over once they are cooked up. Now add your stock and herbs, including the bay leaf:

Put it in the oven for about three quarters of an hour. Meanwhile get the cobblers ready. Grab the Atora Suet:

Ooh! 30% less fat! That‘ll make a difference…

Create the dumplings as per the packet instructions:

Take the pot out of the oven and pop the dumplings on top:

Now return the pot to the oven. You might want to add some more stock too, especially if you got a bit slap-dash with the pearl barley. Put the lid on for 10 mins and then let it cook in the oven without the lid so those doughy balls go all golden brown. ‘Golden Brown, texture like sun’…

Nothing died to create this. Well not directly, as far as I’m aware.

Now serve. Straight up. No condiments. Hearty and wholesome. And damn tasty!

Now lets be clear – this is one seriously juicy dish – it might look a bit dry but those pearly drops of barley hold more moisture than a natural sponge – damn delicious!!

29 thoughts on “The Vegetarian and the Carnivore

  1. Oh my goodness, I’m in heaven! πŸ™‚

    When I lived in the UK, I once had a Veg Cobbler at a chainstore eatery/cafeteria(?). Was it BHS, perhaps? I honestly can’t remember but it was absolutely deeelish!!! The barley adds so much. Perfect for winter!

    I might have to find a sub for the vegetable suet. I’ve seen beef suet in the stores but never the veggie equivalent…

  2. That looks absolutely delicious and I’m not a vegetarian by any stretch. I’d order that on a menu any day as long as there was a picture of it. Just the ingredients alone don’t do it for me.

  3. Ok you made me look up “pescatarian”, thank you for expanding my knowledge base πŸ™‚ And then I looked up vegetarian suet… well, I don’t think you want to know what I found there.
    This dish looks really excellent,especially those dumplings.

  4. I was kind of wondering what was actually in vegetarian suet. I would use butter. At least I would know that it came from something I recognize!

    But maybe I wouldn’t achieve the same texture of dumplings that you have here with butter. This looks really amazing. I wouldn’t want to mess up the texture by using the wrong fat.

    So . . . I guess the best thing to do would be . . . use lard!


  5. Excellent post. You are really taking a ‘no prisioners’ approach. I wholeheartedly approve. Even if there is no meat in there, it looks very tasty.

  6. Suet is such an unattractive word. And vegetarian suet? Yikes, pass the red wine! Looks good, though I might just make the biscuits or dumplings from scratch; I’d have to as I’ve never even seen such a thing.

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