‘Paupiettes’ are basically little stuffed parcels of varying types. Common here in France are Paupiettes de Veau – where veal scallops are flattened until nice and thin and then stuffed with sausage meat, tied up, cooked and served with a creamy sauce.
You see them everywhere, you can buy them ready to cook in all the supermarkets. I think they look very appetising, these neat little parcels, promising something delicious within. Naturally I would much rather make my own than buy them ready made so I thought I had better give them a whirl.
I took inspiration from a recipe I saw in the French cookery magazine ‘Gourmand’ where cabbage leaves were used as the paupiette wrappers and then stuffed with chicken. This reminded me of a delicious dish I once had at the Mirabelle restaurant in London when it was owned by Marco Pierre White. There I had Pigeon & Foie Gras Paupiettes which were parceled up in cabbage leaves. A very good food memory indeed.
Cabbage is in season now and it is one of those vegetables that I associate strongly with Autumn. It’s a vegetable that goes so well with stews or with roasted meats, It’s for cold days, it is for simple cooking, it’s kind of old school.
But used as a wrapper for this delicious filling, the humble cabbage has become more exciting, more ingenious, it has elevated itself into something very clever!
The stuffing is made from chicken, mushrooms, garlic, onions, cumin and rosemary and it’s powerful stuff! This dish is robust, hearty, essentially rustic but also elegant. I made a creamy sauce out of the stock I cooked them in which added a softer note to the powerful flavours of the stuffing.
This is traditional French country cooking. Just the way I like it…
Paupiettes de Chou Frisé (Stuffed Parcels of Cabbage)
2 chicken breasts, cut into small cubes
2 slices of white bread
50 ml of milk
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 mushrooms, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp of ground cumin
1/2 tsp chopped rosemary
4 whole leaves of cabbage
string to tie parcels
300ml chicken stock
2 tbsp double cream
new potatoes with butter and chives to serve
Using a food processor, blitz the bread to make breadcrumbs then place them in a bowl with the milk and leave them to soak. Meanwhile chop up your chicken, onions and mushrooms.
In a frying pan, heat the olive oil and fry the chicken until sealed and add the onion, mushrooms and garlic and cook for 5 minutes. Then add the cumin, rosemary and season. and cook for a further 2 minutes.
Tip the chicken mixture into a food processor with the soaked breadcrumbs and blitz until finely minced. Adjust seasoning if necessary and set aside.
Carefully take the leaves off the cabbage keeping them intact. You don’t want any torn or damaged leaves. I prepared a couple of extra leaves just incase any tore whilst cooking. Add the leaves to a pan of boiling salted water and simmer for 10 minutes.
Drain the leaves and lay them out on a work board. Take a generous tablespoon of the chicken stuffing and place in the center of a leaf. Then fold in the sides as you would wrapping a present. Take a length of string and tie the parcel up and repeat with 3 more leaves.
Place the paupiettes in a pan which has a lid, add the hot chicken stock, cover and cook for 20 minutes.
Remove the paupiettes and keep warm. Let the chicken stock reduce for a few minutes and then stir in the cream to make the sauce. Season and spoon over the parcels to serve alongside some buttered new potatoes with chives. And don’t forget to take off the string before you eat them!
I am entering these tasty little packages in to Cooking With Herbs hosted by Karen from Lavender & Lovage.
15 thoughts on “Paupiettes de Chou Frisé (Stuffed Parcels of Cabbage)”
Oh my goodness, these look stunning and clever! Xx
Thanks Deema! I think they look pretty good! I know cabbage isn’t everyones cup of tea but these little parcels are a great way to make cabbage cool!! xx
Love these! I’m starting to get in to fall cooking – next week. Right now I’m enjoying the return of summer.
I know…the weather is a bit crazy right now. Save this one for when it’s cooler again. x
What a perfect dish for Autumn, love all the flavours you have used and that sauce to go with it turns this into a rich and satisfying meal for all the family 🙂
Thanks Laura. Glad you like the sound of them – they really do pack a flavour punch. x
I miss my grandmother’s Jewish style stuffed cabbage w/ beef, tomatoes, rice and raisins…..I have never attempted to make them.
If I come visit you in SW France, will you promise to make these for me?
No problem! If you are always welcome if you find yourself in these rural parts and I will happily feed you up xx
These are gorgeous. It is funny, because I was talking about stuffed cabbage leaves last night with a friend. I have got to make this. Thank you.
Excellent! I am very happy to have been able to inspire. Do let me know if you make them and what you think!
I had an amazing stuffed cabbage leaf once at a Spanish restaurant in London, forgotten about it until I read this but you have prompted me to have a go, many thanks!
Excellent Anna – I hope if you make these that they do not disappoint! They were pretty easy to make so good luck – let me know if you enjoy them x
Nice recipe! I remember making veal paupiettes and also stuffed cabbage paupiettes at Le Cordon Bleu school. We wrapped the stuffed cabbage leaves in a sort of ‘fish-net’ stomach lining from the cow, in order to hold it together (I can’t remember the name of this membrane).
Hi Fran, oh yes I know the stuff you mean. Isn’t it called ‘caul’ or something like that? Bit of a specialist ingredient though and these work fine just with cabbage and string. x
Oh yes, now I remember the name ‘caul’. It was rather wet and slimy, not for eating, but just to hold the food together while cooking. Let’s bring on string- no need for caul!
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