Friday, October 06, 2006

stuffed cabbage .... unstuffed

this recipe has all the taste of stuffed cabbage rolls sans all the hard labour. not that i am lazy. i am far from it — i have been forced this year to do it this way due to time limitations. here is a quick "how-to" unstuff your stuffed cabbage rolls. this recipe takes a bit of foresight as you need an overnight before finishing off the recipe for best results.

it is homey food for a cold evening. not a beauty but satisfying peasant-style fare which is appropriate for the season and holiday nonetheless.

unstuffed cabbage
the simple cast of unlikelies:

main characters: shredded cabbage, meat fortified w/ rice, tomato sauce & ginger snaps

supporting cast members: brown sugar, lemon juice, eggs, ginger ale & spices.


medium cabbage, cored and shredded with a knife

1.5 lb ground beef
1/3 c rice [i use white jasmine]
2 eggs
onion powder
garlic powder
cinnamon & allspice [optional]
dried minced onions [you can sub 1/2 small onion, diced]

3/4 c brown sugar
1/3 - 1/2 c lemon juice
1 can gingerale
1 28 oz can diced or crushed tomatoes
1 5.5 oz can tomato paste
8 gingersnap cookies, broken into small pieces
[optional but really don't skip this part] --> see previous post for recipe


cut cabbage in half. core and shred it with a cook's knife. put it aside.

in one bowl, mix together the meat with the rice, 1 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1 tsp of garlic and onion powder, 1 tsp paprika, 2 tsp of minced onion [or the fresh] and 2 eggs. mix well and set aside.

in another bowl, mix together the tomatoes, the tomato paste, the 1 tbsp and 1 tsp dried onion, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, 1/4 tsp of cinnamon & allspice, 1 tsp paprika, the brown sugar and 2/3 can gingerale.

turn on the oven to 350 F.

in a fairly large casserole — i use a big le creuset — or pyrex pan, add half of the shredded cabbage.

place half the sauce over the cabbage. then sprinkle half the cookies on top.

take scoops of meat and make meatballs a little smaller than a fist or just lay the meat across the top of the sauce if you want. use all of the meat.

now, repeat the layer of cabbage and sauce but mix in the cookies with the remaining half of the sauce.

place this uncovered in the oven for 45 minutes. remove from oven and lower the temperature to 250 F. take aluminum foil and tightly cover the pot and place the lid on top. just cover tightly if using pyrex. replace in the oven and bake 2 more hours.

remove from the oven and let cool. put this in the fridge overnight.

the next day, put the pot back in the oven for 2 more hours at 300 F. after one hour, check to see if you need to uncover the pot to finish cooking down the liquid.


recipe given to me by a friend. sorry about the bad pictures. lighting was way "off".