Making stuffed cabbage… 🙂
Start with a head of cabbage.
The easiest way I have found to remove the leaves came from this blog http://www.chefdoughty.com/blog/?p=45 All you do is to take a paring knife and remove the entire core from the head. Once you get the core out take the whole cabbage and set it in a large pot of boiling water until the outer leaves are somewhat pliable and softened. This will happen rather quickly. As each outer leaf softens you will be able to pry it off the head with a pair of tongs. Let the next outer leaf blanch some more and then it can easily be removed. You just repeat this process until you get as many leaves as you need.
When you get to the point that the leaves are too small to mess with just remove what’s left of the head, cool it down, throw it in a bag and use it as a vegetable in soup or some other food preparation.
I made a double batch so it ended up using almost all the cabbage.
Here is my recipe
2 lbs ground meat (I used beef)
2 cups cooked rice (I used brown rice)
1/2 chopped onion
1 stalk celery chopped
16 oz can of tomato sauce (1/3 goes in with the meat, 1/3 goes on the bottom of the pan and 1/3 is poured on top of the cabbage rolls.
I don’t add any salt since most tomato sauce is loaded with salt already. I find it is much easier to add salt after baking than it is to get rid of it. 🙂
Smash all the ingredients together you could use a spoon but I find the hand method works best.
This blog http://theshiksa.com/2011/10/22/stuffed-cabbage-leaves/ illustrates a great way of rolling the stuffed cabbage. Just trim off a bit of the tough thick stem then place the leaf stem part towards you, with the leaf curl facing up. Drop a blob of your filling near the stem, roll up a bit then fold in one side and start rolling. Roll the whole thing up then tuck in the open end. This works great to keep the leaves from unfolding.
Hopefully this will show you the idea, if not, visit the link above. That blog has wonderful photos.
Pour 1/3 of the tomato sauce in the bottom of the pan and spread it around a bit, then set your cabbage roll in with the open flap at the bottom, the weight of the cabbage roll will keep it from unrolling.
Spread the last 1/3 of the tomato sauce on top. Bake at 350 degrees fahrenheit for about an hour. I covered mine with foil for the first half hour then removed the foil for the last half hour.
And there you have it… YUM!