Christmas Eve savoy cabbage + roast garlic gratin

An easy dinner to prepare on Christmas eve that doesn’t require any hob space and cooks in stages in the oven. Although full of decadent and comforting flavours, this gratin is also still surprisingly light.


1 large savoy cabbage (approx 900g) or 2 smaller
3 onions, peeled and sliced into thin wedges (6ths or 8ths depending on size)
1 large garlic head
3 tbsp olive oil
180g cooked chestnuts, roughly chopped
300ml creme fraiche
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
90g cheddar, grated
40g parmesan cheese, grated
100g breadcrumbs
15g sage leaves
1 tablespoon olive oil

Heat the oven to 170c fan/ gas 5.

Prepare the cabbage by discarding any tough outer layers and slicing into 8 wedges.

Add the onion wedges and the garlic head to a large oven dish/ roasting tray and add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Roast for 20 minutes before placing the cabbage wedges on top, equally distributed, and add the last tablespoon of oil. Roast for further 30 minutes, turning the cabbage wedges from time to time. They will start to catch and the leaves will become golden.

Once cooked, squeeze the garlic out of its skin and discard the skins. Add the cooked garlic and the chestnuts into the tray and mix everything.

In a bowl combine the creme fraiche, mustard, and vinegar. Reserve a third of both the cheeses and add the rest to the bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add this sauce to the baking tray, covering all the cabbage wedges.

Reserve 3 or 4 sage leaves and blitz the rest together with the breadcrumbs in a food processor. Add a tablespoon of oil.

Tip the breadcrumbs over the top of the sauce and finally the reserved cheese and sage leaves. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes until golden on top. Serve with a crisp green salad alongside.

IMAGE: Elly Kemp

Posted: 14.12.22 9 Comments


Posted by Kali at 3:49 on the 16.12.22

This sounds delicious but I am not quite sure about the garlic head. Do you leave it all or separate it into cloves? Is it peeled?

Posted by Claudia at 7:00 on the 17.12.22

We absolutely loved this. It makes for a perfect weekday or even weekend dinner, but would absolutely be able to stand alone as a centrepiece at the Christmas table, as suggested. Thank you for this wonderful recipe, it will be a return guest at our dinner table for sure.

Posted by Elizabeth at 8:15 on the 18.12.22

Sounds delicious but Yes I am also wondering about the garlic head.

Posted by at 10:13 on the 19.12.22

Sorry, hopefully we’ve made that a bit clearer above now. Merry Christmas x

Posted by Nola at 10:22 on the 20.12.22

I’m not sure what went wrong for me with this one but it didn’t turn out.

Posted by Georgia at 2:41 on the 22.12.22

Can this be made ahead? I’m trying to do as much before hosting as possible. Thank you x

Posted by Amanda at 6:21 on the 22.12.22

If one can’t source savoy cabbage, is regular cabbage okay?

Posted by Sara at 1:40 on the 25.12.22

Our friend just made this for us on Christmas Eve and we went absolutely insane for it. It’s AMAZING. Cabbage is the thing and I will never ever get excited about, and then, when someone makes it an amazing recipe like this, I go gaga over it. Luckily, now I have the recipe! Thanks!

Posted by Miranda at 9:34 on the 27.12.22

Fantastic, as ever Anna and team! Made this for family and went down really well. Wouldn’t use too big a roasting tray as some of the sauce evaporated and I imagine the gooier the better..

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