Monday, December 26, 2011
I'm on a Polish food cooking kick these days...earlier this week, I tried my hand at kotlet grzyby (mushroom cutlet) and of course I have eaten plenty of kapusta this holiday. Today's creation is golabki, commonly called stuffed cabbage or cabbage rolls. When we were kids, we always called them cabbage "trolls" or "pigs in a blanket" and my mom made hers Campbell's tomato soup and her "secret ingredient" she used in almost all of her cooking....Lipton's French onion soup mix. She would make them in the pressure cooker, but it's not really required. They will cook up well in the oven or in a slow cooker. Here's how I make them...make sure to season with enough salt and lots of fresh ground pepper. When I was a kid, I would eat mine "naked" - I'd peel off the cooked cabbage, but I love cooked cabbage now. I'd recommend doing that still for kids or adults that don't share the cooked cabbage love.
Makes enough for at 4-6 people
1 medium head cabbage
2 onions, chopped fine
2 T butter
2 lb ground beef or 1 1/2 lb ground beef plus 1/2 lb ground pork or veal
1 cup rice
2 large cans tomato sauce - preferably no salt added
salt and pepper
Remove core from cabbage and scald the cabbage in boiling water to soften the leaves. Remove cabbage a few leaves at a time, cutting away any tough stems. Put cabbage back in the water to scald if the inner leaves are still hard. Let cool.
Meanwhile, saute onion in butter until soft. Do not brown. Parboil rice in 2 quarts of rapidly boiling hot water for 10 minutes, drain. Mix onion, rice, ground meat, eggs and half a can of tomato sauce for the filling. Add at least 2 teaspoons coarse salt salt and plenty of pepper. Fill leaves with meat and rice filling, rolling leaves around meat to make a small package. Place seam side down in a large crock pot. Pour remaining tomato sauce on top of stuffed cabbage leaves, add salt and pepper to taste. Cook on high for about 4 hours (or low for 8 hours). Adjust seasonings. Serve stuffed cabbage with tomato sauce spooned on top.