Rice cake is a dish that takes me back to my childhood. It was indeed a special celebration dish as it needed a special ingredient, pigeon, but also a lot of time to make, so my revisited recipe is this Vegetarian rice cake.
To tell the truth, when I think back to what I felt when I ate it, the taste of that dish still remains clear and contrasting: I remember how delicious the meat sauce prepared with pigeon meat cut into small pieces was, but the rice around the meat was a bit dry and too much (for me as a child) since it filled the large, high-sided pan, the one perfect for being slipped into the Petronilla (the Dutch oven, the only one we had) so that the surface, sprinkled with breadcrumbs, could brown and become crispy.
Well, many years later, I came up with the idea of revisiting our Rice cake to adapt it to today’s needs (i.e. to replace a meat that is not readily available with healthy, light vegetables) and, why not, to eliminate what I considered to be a defect, i.e. to reduce the ratio of rice to filling, thus obtaining a pleasant juicy sensation in a nice crispy envelope. And if you like preparations in the frying pan, try myPan-fried potato pie.
Vegetarian rice cake
22.37g carbohydrates per 100g
- 540g vegetable stock
- 270g Carnaroli rice
- 150g Scamorza cheese
- 1 egg
- 200g small courgettes
- 120g carrots
- 50g red pepper
- 50g yellow pepper
- 50g spring onion
- 40g breadcrumbs**
- Grated Parmesan cheese, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper
** Ingredients specific for celiacs
The ingredients of the Vegetarian rice cake
- Cook the rice in the vegetable stock and turn off the heat when it is still rather al dente, then let it cool and season with egg and a handful of grated Parmesan cheese.
- In the meantime, julienne cut courgettes and carrots, dice the red and yellow pepper into approximately 1cm cubes and thinly slice the white part of the spring onion.
- Heat the wok, add a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, pour in the vegetables and season with salt and pepper. Put the lid on for a few minutes so that a little water escapes from the vegetables, which will allow them to cook. Cook until the vegetables are slightly soft.
- Spread half of the cooked and seasoned rice on a sheet of parchment paper lightly greased with oil and form a circle the diameter of the non-stick pan in which we will cook our cake (approx. 26cm); sprinkle the surface with breadcrumbs.
- Brush the frying pan with oil and tip the rice disc into it so that the side with the breadcrumbs is in contact with the pan. Sprinkle the disc with part of the Scamorza cheese lightly chopped in a food processor, cover with the vegetable sauce and add the remaining Scamorza.
Prepare another disc with the cooked rice, this time without sprinkling it with breadcrumbs. With the help of parchment paper, lay it on top of the vegetables and, once in place, break off the parchment paper to remove it, leaving the disc to top the cake. Alternatively, cover the vegetables by creating a layer of rice with your hands directly on top of them. In this case, the layer of rice may not be perfectly even, but this will not compromise the flavour of the preparation.
When the base of the cake is golden brown, use two lids as big as the cake to help you turn it over and put it back into the pan upside down. Let the second side of the cake brown as well and serve it hot.
Version with gluten of Vegetarian rice cake
Replace gluten-free breadcrumbs with standard breadcrumbs
This recipe participates in the “Rice Food Blogger 2016 – Chef Giuseppina Carboni” contest
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