Savory Vegetable Noodle Kugel for RFJ

Thursday, January 29, 2009

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The ingredients for this month’s Royal Foodie Joust were chosen by Billy from A Table for Two. Billy took pity on us and selected ingredients that would lend themselves to simple preparations. After the hustle and bustle of the Holidays, it was much appreciated! He decided on mushrooms, cauliflower and noodles.

For those few that may not be familiar with the Royal Foodie Joust, it is the brainchild of our own lovely and talented Jenn, The Leftover Queen. It’s a monthly cooking competition for members of The Foodie Blogroll. Each month, the previous month’s winner chooses three ingredients and the rest of us go crazy trying to create a delicious dish incorporating all three ingredients into it! Then, all of the members are invited to vote on their favorite. And so it goes…..

The first RFJ that I entered was back in October, 2008. I made a Creamy Gorgonzola, Fennel & Pear Tart, and was flabbergasted to learn that I had actually won! I’ve been really anxious to try my luck again ever since.

I didn’t want to just throw together a regular pasta dish for this one. I needed to figure out something a little more original. One of my favorite noodle dishes has always been a noodle or lochshen kugel.

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A Jewish specialty, a kugel is a baked casserole-like dish, featuring either noodles or potatoes and anything else that the chef who is making it desires. Kugels may be sweet or savory, but the most popular kinds are those served as desserts. (BTW, I have a killer Cherry Cheese Kugel recipe that I promise to share with you one day.)

Anyway, I didn’t think mushrooms and cauliflower would work too well in a dessert dish, so I came up with a savory kugel using vegetables and goat cheese. I used the required mushrooms and cauliflower in my dish, as well as onions and carrots (for sweetness and color). You could use any vegetable and seasoning combination you like. I think that this recipe is very versatile that way. I also toyed with the idea of adding bacon or chopped ham. I didn’t because I wanted to keep it vegetarian, but I do intend to try it that way next time.

I started out by cooking some onions down in butter and olive oil until they were really soft and sweet. Then, I added each of the other vegetables in, one by one, and sauteed them until tender. The binder for my kugel was a mixture of the traditional cottage cheese, sour cream and eggs, but with a twist. I also blended in a healthy dose of soft and creamy goat cheese, or chevre. That little bit of tanginess from that velvety chevre made all the difference. It was subtle, but definitely there. And, it was the perfect counterpoint to the mellow sweetness of the onions.

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I was so pleased with the way that this kugel turned out! It was a really delicious dish and a big hit at Chez SGCC. It is also a great dish for a buffet, because it can be made in advance and is best served at room temperature. There is nothing fussy or complicated about it either. Hell, if I could do it standing on one foot, anybody with two good feet should have no trouble!

If any of you Foodie Blogrollers like my kugel as much as I do, please take a minute to hop on over to the forum when the voting begins and……

VOTE FOR ME!

Please and Pretty Please? I’ll love you forever! winky-sml2

Enjoy!

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Hello and welcome to SGCC! I’m Susan, a professional writer, food columnist, recipe developer, wife, mother, daughter and sister, who used to be a lawyer in a previous life. My love of food comes from a long line of wonderful and creative Italian home cooks who didn’t always have a lot, but knew how to make a lot out of what they had. I hope that you enjoy yourself while you’re here, and visit often! read more >>

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