- Ready In:
- 1 cup uncooked rice, rinsed,soaked in cold water for 1 hour,and drained
- 1 large green cabbage (about 3 lb) or 2 small green cabbage
- 2 tablespoons butter or 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely diced
- 2 -3 cloves garlic, finely chopped or 1/2 teaspoon garlic granules
- 8 ounces lean ground beef
- 8 ounces ground lean pork
- 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves or 2 tablespoons dried parsley flakes
- 1 medium green bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
- 2 stalks celery & leaves, finely diced
- coarse salt
- fresh ground pepper
- 2 (8 -12 ounce) cans tomato sauce, depending on how saucy you want your cabbage rolls
- 1⁄4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed,to taste
- 2 -4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, more to taste
- 1⁄2 cup sour cream, plus more for garnish (optional)
- Soak rice while preparing the cabbage and the rest of the filling.
- Using a paring knife, cut out the center core of cabbage.
- Bring water to a boil in a pot large enough to easily hold cabbage head.
- Add cabbage, and cook for 2-3 minutes or until outer leaves are tender but still bright green.
- Lift cabbage from water, and remove outer leaves.
- Return cabbage to boiling water, and repeat brief cooking and removal of leaves until all large outer leaves are removed and nothing but the core remains.
- Reserve 1 cup cabbage cooking water.
- Trim thick center vein from bottom of each leaf until thin enough to roll.
- Finely chop about 1 cup of cabbage core for the filling, and coarsely chop and reserve the remainder of the cabbage core.
- In a medium skillet, melt butter or olive oil over medium heat.
- Crumble ground beef and pork into skillet, and cook until beginning to brown.
- Add onion and garlic, and cook until golden and tender, about 5 more minutes.
- Transfer to a large bowl, and add drained rice, finely chopped cabbage, parsley, green pepper, and celery, and stir to combine.
- Season generously to taste with salt and pepper.
- Add about 1/3 cup of filling to a cabbage leaf.
- Fold base, then sides of cabbage over filling, and roll up leaf, starting with the stem end.
- Repeat with remaining leaves and filling.
- Line the bottom of a 5-6 quart Dutch oven or large casserole with coarsely chopped cabbage core, and place cabbage rolls on top, packing tightly.
- If any large gaps remain between rolls, fill with remaining chopped cabbage.
- In a small saucepan, combine tomato sauce and the reserved 1 cup of cooking water from cabbage, brown sugar, and lemon juice.
- Bring to a simmer, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Pour some of the tomato sauce over stuffed cabbage to just cover them.
- Bring to a gentle simmer, adding additional tomato sauce as needed, cover, and simmer for 1 hour or until cabbage rolls are very tender.
- If desired, place sour cream in a small bowl, and ladle in about 3/4 cup of tomato sauce from the cooked stuffed cabbage rolls.
- Whisk to combine, return sour cream mixture to Dutch oven, and stir to combine.
- Serve with additional sour cream if desired.
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