Stuffed Cabbage

The other day I had a free afternoon so I pulled out one of my slow recipes.  These are the recipes I make with my favorite music playing, the birds on my shoulder, and I have plenty of time to enjoy the process of cooking.  Now usually these recipes tend to be on the fattening side, but this is an exception.  I found the original recipe on Weight Watchers, but I have modified it quite a bit.  For one thing, their recipe only made four servings.  Well, if I am going to spend an hour preparing something I am certainly going to make sure it serves more than four!  My version makes about nine or ten servings.

The first time I made this recipe it just made me mad because it really does take a long time to prepare and I couldn't figure out how to roll the cabbage.  Then finally I figured out the secret.  TIME.  Just give yourself time to do it.  Get your favorite music going; maybe a glass of wine; and enjoy the process.  This can be a very relaxing dish to make if you let it.  This dish is totally worth it and and you will also have a new-found respect for ladies that make lumpia or pot stickers!

  • 1 head Chinese cabbage, (see picture)
  • 1pound uncooked lean ground beef or ground turkey
  • 1 cup uncooked white rice 
  • 1 cup water 
  • 1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs 
  • 2 medium carrots, grated 
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped 
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, minced 
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp table salt 
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper 
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil 
  • 2 - 29 oz canned diced tomatoes, with basil, garlic and oregano
  • Parmesan cheese (optional)

    1. Fill a large pot of water and bring to a boil.
    2. Cut the bottom inch or two off the cabbage and separate the leaves carefully.
    3. Blanche the leave in the boiling water and put in a strainer and set aside.
    4. Combine beef, rice, water, bread crumbs, carrot, onion, garlic, eggs, salt and pepper in a large bowl; mix well.
    5. Spoon about 1/4 cup of beef mixture near the top of each leaf. 
    6. Fold over the two sides then roll the top over the beef then continue rolling to make loose rolls (rice will expand during cooking so it is important not to roll them too tightly).
    7. Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat; add rolls and sauté until golden brown on all sides, turning frequently, about 5 minutes.  Do this in batches.
    8. Gently add the rolls to a large stockpot or dutch oven.
    9. Add the tomatoes and bring to a simmer.
    10. Reduce heat and cook at least one hour checking pot every 15 minutes or so and stirring to prevent sticking.
    11. Serve in a bowl sprinkled with Parmesan cheese.


    Anonymous April 3, 2010 at 7:04 PM  

    Sounds fantastic. And I can get all the ingredients at my local supermarket (that's not always the case in Osaka)!

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    About Sean & Joey

    Joey and I are just a couple of guys living in San Francisco. I love cooking and we both like trying new things. Planning our meals is one of our "together" things. I hope you enjoy our blog! - Sean


    This blog is dedicated to the two most important people in my life - my mom, Ernee Jean O'Brien, and my partner Joey Concepcion. They both have showered me with unconditional support and love and have always encouraged me to be myself. I will always miss my mom and I don't know what I would do without Joey.

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