it is almost exactly like those cabbage rolls which are filled with whatever meat you normally use. i have managed to fool quite a few people over the years with these. as this is a recipe of my own doing, at the moment i can only vouch for using the yves brand groundround product. i am sure a similar product would produce the same results. i love using the dried sweetened cranberries from ocean spray (see ingredients in the recipe) instead of the traditional raisins.
the recipe can be doubled and the rolls frozen for later use. if you do not or cannot use soy "meat" products, then you can most definitely replace it with real ground beef or turkey. i would add an egg to the mixture also, in that case. do not cook the meat beforehand either — just mix it together as you would for regular rolls. i will experiment at a later date with tvp & extra firm crumbled tofu to see if it measures up for a non-meat substitute.
this time i used a savoy cabbage in place of the standard cabbage we see at the market. you can either separate and boil the leaves or boil the whole cabbage itself for several minutes. i did the former in this instance.
the standard measure for filling is about 2 tbsp per leaf however you should decrease it to 1 tbsp when filling the smaller inner leaves, should you be using a smaller savoy cabbage. you can, of course, use a regular cabbage too.
vegetarian "meat" cabbage rolls
makes approximately 12 - 15
1 pkg yves ground round or similar product [340 g pkg]
scant 1/3 c [jasmine] rice
4 tbsp [fresh] finely ground bread crumbs
1 tsp salt
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/8 - 1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 - 2 tsp sugar
1 tbsp ketchup
1 large onion
3 cloves garlic
1 savoy cabbage
1 1/2 c tomato sauce [2 small cans hunts]
1/4 c ketchup
1/2 - 3/4 c apple sauce
1/2 c water
1 1/2 - 2 tbsp brown sugar
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
3 tbsp craisins, or golden raisins or chopped dried apricots
dice the onion and garlic and fry in 1 - 2 tbsp olive oil until soft and very lightly browned. set aside 3 tbsp of this mixture for the filling.
make the sauce by combining all the ingredients along with the onion-garlic mixture in a saucepan. bring to a boil and simmer for approximately 5 to 10 minutes.
make filling by adding all ingredients together and the reserved onion-garlic mixture in a bowl. it will stick together nicely though it looks loose in this photo. if using meat, add one egg. it will take about 3/4 lb of meat.
separate the leaves of the cabbage and put them in a pot of boiling water for about 3 to 4 minutes. remove and let cool. when cool, take a paring knife and horizontally (parallel) remove part of the thick central vein to make it more flexible for rolling. don't skip this step.
depending on the size of the leaf, place 2 heaping tablespoons of mixture on it — use less filling for a smaller leaf. put it near the base and roll up, tucking in each side as your roll. place these, seam side down, in a large pyrex or container that will contain them. add 3/4 cup of water and put these in 325 degree oven for 1 hour, covered. this is too cook the raw rice and steam the leaves further.
after the hour is up, remove the pan from the oven and remove the cover. there should be little water left. [remember if you are using meat there may be excess liquid due to the meat releasing its juices; if there is too much you can discard some of it]. carefully put the sauce over the rolls making sure to cover all of them.
reduce the temperature to 275. cover the pyrex or (roasting) pan again and place back in the oven for another 1 1/2 hours. remove the pyrex and take the cover off and return the rolls to the oven for another 15 - 20 minutes.
take the pyrex out and let the rolls cool down before serving. these taste even better the next day.