Thomasina Miers’ vegan recipe for cabbage, artichokes and chestnuts

Silky and earthy: Thomasina Miers’ charred cabbage with artichokes and chestnuts. Photograph: Yuki Sugiura/The Guardian. Food styling: Aya Nishimura. Plate: Kaori Tatebayashi Ceramics

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Have you ever noticed how we crave sugary and carb-laden foods after a wild night out? Our bodies are great at demanding the fuels they need, when they need them. As I get older, I find I crave more vegetables than I used to (whoever heard of a teenager craving vegetables?), and far less meat. How great, then, that we celebrate vegetables so much more these days, not just because we know about their many benefits for health and the environment, but because we can make so many wonderful things with them.

Charred cabbage with jerusalem artichokes and chestnuts

Silky, earthy artichokes, charred, tender cabbage, sweet chestnuts and a bright, piquant sauce – this is a real feast of flavours to drive out the January chill.

Prep 6 min
Cook 40 min
Serves 4

400g jerusalem artichokes, scrubbed clean with wire wool
120ml extra-virgin olive oil
Salt
For the cabbage
4 tbsp vegetable or rapeseed oil
1 january king cabbage, or 2 hispi cabbages, quartered through the stems
1 tbsp sherry vinegar
150g cooked chestnuts, roughly chopped
For the green sauce
60g olive oil
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 red onion, peeled and finely chopped
2 large handfuls parsley leaves, finely chopped
3 tbsp sherry or white-wine vinegar

Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6. Cut the artichokes into bitesize chunks and put into a steamer. Steam until tender, around 20 minutes. Put into a bowl and pour in the olive oil. Blitz smooth with a hand blender, then season and set aside somewhere warm.
Heat one and a half tablespoons of the vegetable oil in a large frying pan. When hot, add two of the cabbage quarters and press down hard so they have plenty of contact with the pan. Cook them for a few minutes until dark and charred, then turn, using a pair of tongs, to fry the other cut sides until charred. When done, sprinkle over half the vinegar, leave to bubble up then transfer the cabbage to a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining quarters.

Season the charred wedges and roast in the oven for 10-15 minutes, until tender in the middle.

Meanwhile, wipe the frying pan and return it to the heat. Once hot, add the final tablespoon of vegetable oil. Add the chestnuts, then season and stir-fry until crisp and golden-edged. Transfer to a piece of kitchen paper to drain.

To make the green sauce, gently heat the oil and paprika in a small pan. Once it begins to bubble, take off the heat and stir in the onion, parsley and vinegar. Season and leave to cool.

Spoon the warm artichoke puree on to plates, put a wedge of cabbage on top, spoon the sauce over and scatter the crisp chestnuts on top.

And for the rest of the week
Use leftover chestnuts to make a stuffing for crown prince squash with sauteed onion, garlic and herbs, or blitz them with cream and rum and serve topped with grated dark chocolate. Leftover artichokes can be made into an incredibly silky, comforting soup with thyme, garlic and a touch of truffle oil, or go new wave and have them for pudding in the form of ice-cream.

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