White Beans on Baguette and Spicy Cabbage & Rice on Baguette

Yugoslavian Appetizers – Are you kidding me?!

A few months ago, while in Santa Barbara, we went to the Chase Restaurant & Lounge, which bills itself as an Italian steakhouse. It was not a great restaurant, but we had a very nice lunch. It’s one of those red “leatherette” type places that looks like Frank Sinatra threw up in, i.e. the décor. I don’t really want to trash the place completely, because the staff couldn’t have been nicer and gave my daughter, Zoe, a piece of chocolate cake (on the house) upon hearing that she passed her learners permit test.

Anyway, I need to stop rambling! When we were seated, they brought out two little plates of appetizers with some sliced baguette. I must say, I looked at it rather dubiously. One plate was white beans with onions and the other looked very strange – cabbage, peppers, rice in some sort of a tomato sauce. The waiter said it was a Yugoslavian specialty. He said to put a little of each on a piece of bread, roll it up and eat it. I was still not going there. I waited and watched my family indulge first. When they started prying it out of each other’s hands, I had a taste. Much to my surprise it was delicious – the beans were rather bland and the cabbage concoction rather spicy and the combination of the two was amazing.

Upon arriving home, I did some research online to see if I could find out what it was. The attached is fairly close.

White Beans on Baguette

3 Tbs olive oil
2 medium onions, halved lengthwise and cut lengthwise into thin slices (2 1/2 cups)
1 large garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
3/4 cup water
1 (16 oz) can white beans such as Great Northern or cannellini, drained and rinsed

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté onions, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and sauté, stirring, 1 minute, then add the beans, salt and pepper. Remove from heat.

Serve warm or at room temperature on sliced baguettes.

Spicy Cabbage & Rice on Baguette

¼ head cabbage, cut into 1” squares
Salt & pepper to taste
1 large onion, chopped
1 large bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp paprika
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
2 cups cooked rice

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet then add onions, bell peppers, stirring, sauté until onions are clear. Add cabbage, garlic and paprika, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Then add canned tomato sauce and stir all cover, simmer until cabbage is tender, then stir in rice and remove from heat.

If too dry, add water, if too wet, uncover after cooking.

Serve warm or at room temperature on sliced baguettes.

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