Stuffed Cabbage Rolls
(25)
"There are a few tips that I recommend to making good cabbage rolls: Use the freshest cabbage that you can find. Don’t use the half dry cabbage because the fresher the cabbage leaves are the more liquid and flavour they will give out. Autumn and winter are a great time for cabbage. Try using different sorts of cabbage like savoy or other. Use all the leaves apart from the very first few outside ones and the leaves surrounding the centre core of the cabbage. I like to use most of the leaves and try to use the entire cabbage apart from the centre…I compost the first few leaves as they are just a bit too tough but the rest of the usable leaves I separate and blanch in hot water. Once they are all in the pot I recommend cooking the cabbage rolls for longer as the dark and stronger leaves do take a bit longer to cook just to soften them. Just test one roll after about 1 hour of cooking and decide for yourself if you would like the cabbage rolls even softer. Don’t forget to season all the different elements and make sure there is enough liquid that just covers the cabbage rolls or 1 cm under so that the cabbage rolls all cook through evenly. Some nice ingredients and flavourings I recommend experimenting with is using different sorts of grains (rice or millet) and using fresh tomatoes, cooked tomatoes, passata sauce, grated carrot or diced capsicums. Freshly ground caraway seeds are also a nice addition to the meat mix. You can use pre cooked rice, half pre cooked rice or raw rice in the filling mixture."
-- @anastasiazolotarev
A Note from Feedfeed

Stuffed cabbages are an Eastern European comfort food that always warms our heart. Rice, herbs and ground meat are tucked into blanched cabbage leaves and steamed until tender. Serve with a bit of sour cream and chili flakes and you're in business! 

Recipe

Details

Prep time 30mins
Cook time 1hr 30mins
Serves or Makes: 6

Recipe

  • 1 large cabbage, first outer leaves discarded
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 1 pound fresh small tomatoes
  • 1 large carrot, grated
  • 1/ 2 cup rice
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 handful of fresh parsley or dill
  • 1 tablespoon chilli flakes
  • Kosher salt and pepper, to taste

Method

  • Step 1

    Prepare the rice first. Par cook the rice halfway. In a small pot, add 1/2 a cup of water and the rice and bring to the boil. Then, cover with a lid and cook for 5 minutes on a low heat. After 5 minutes, drain the rice and add to a large mixing bowl. Set aside.

  • Step 2

    Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Remove the first few outer leaves of the cabbage, then separate each cabbage leaf until you get through most of the cabbage, discarding the center of the cabbage, as the leaves are too small.

  • Step 3

    Blanch the 4-5 leaves at a time in the boiling hot water until they're fairly tender and bright green, 2-3 minutes. Use kitchen tongs to remove the blanched leaves and set them aside in a bowl. Slice the center out of each leaf so that it is easier to roll or just thinly slice off the edge that sticks out. Reserve the blanching water.

  • Step 4

    With the leaves are cooling, make the cabbage roll. Mix the ground meat together with the rice and season with salt and pepper.

  • Step 5

    Fill each leaf with approximately 1 heaped tablespoon of the meat and rice mixture. Then cover with the end of the leaf and fold in the two sides and roll. Place each roll in a large pot, seam side down. Once one layer is complete, add a thin layer of carrot and tomatoes on top of the cabbage rolls. Then repeat with another layer of cabbage rolls, then carrots and tomatoes, until you have used all of your filling. Once you have filled up the whole pot pour in the leftover blanching liquid, coming up 3/4 of the way up the pot.

  • Step 6

    Cover with a lid and bring to a simmer, cooking on a low heat continuously for approximately 1 hour. Serve in a bowl along with the liquid (optional) and top with sour cream and fresh herbs and chili flakes.