My Communal Table

Comfy Stuffed Cabbage
March 31, 2010, 12:02 am
Filed under: Main Entree | Tags: , , , ,

Spring is here. I have begun dreaming about the summer farmer’s markets, but the nights are still chilly leaving me in the search for some comfort food. Stuffed cabbage really fits the bill. It is not difficult to make and is super affordable and healthy to serve my family. As Gabriel was downing two whole cabbage rolls, he exclaimed, “Mama, this is my most favorite thing that you cook.” Well, it doesn’t get better then that, does it? I served half the recipe that evening and the other half to a couple of friends for lunch. Because I made it ahead of time, all I had to do is heat and serve when my guests arrive, leaving me time to spend with them.

Start out by coring out your cabbage and then place in pot of water on the stove. As the water heats, the outer layers of the cabbage start to loosen. Start pulling away one at a time. If it is not coming easily, it needs more time in the water.

When leaves are dried off, I cut out the hard center of the leaf. I chop up the cut out core pieces finely and reserve to put in my filling. When I am ready to roll, I place the filling at the center of the cabbage leaf and fold like a burrito.

The most important thing that I learned about stuffed cabbage from my Polish friends is that there are so many variations that there is really no wrong way to prepare it. Does it taste good? Yes, then it is made correctly.

On this particular day, I had 1 lb. of ground turkey breast and pulled out my much used v-slicer. I have owned this particular v-slicer for about twenty years. I love it for making fast work of the veggies that I use in this kind of recipe.

I owned an expensive mandoline, but did not love it like my easy v-slicer. I believe that it is about $30-40 at target vs. about $200 for a mandoline.

I made about 10 cabbage rolls with this recipe size. Serving about 4-5 people.

1/2 cup turnips
1/2 cup potatoes
1/4 cup celery
1/4 cup onions
1/2 cup carrots
2 gloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup parsley
1/4 cup cabbage cores
1 lb. ground turkey breast
1/2 cup mushrooms, finely chopped
1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup fine barley*
1 t. creole seasoning
1 cup chicken broth, low sodium
3 T. olive oil
1 T. flour
salt and pepper

1. Prep cabbage leaves.
2. Heat a saute’ pan over medium heat with 2 T. olive oil.
3. Add turkey and cook until pink is gone.
4. Add turnips, potato, celery, carrots, onion, garlic, mushrooms, cabbage cores. Cook until tender.
5. Add parsley and 1/2 t. creole seasonings. Stir.
6. Add barley.
7. Add chicken broth until it goes up the side of the pan.
8. Turn down low and cover. Just until barley is plumper.
9. Adjust seasonings. Add more creole seasoning, salt and/or pepper if needed.
10. Fill cabbage leaves with filling and place in casserole dish.
11. Wipe out pan and add 1 T. olive oil. Heat over med. heat.
12. Add sliced mushrooms. Cook until tender.
13. Add 1 T. flour and stir.
14. Cook for about a minute.
15. Add 1 cup of chicken broth and stir.
16. When it thickens, pour over cabbage rolls.
17. Chill, if you are not ready to eat soon.
18. Place in a 350F oven for 20 minutes. If coming out of the fridge, cook about 30 or so minutes.**

*Fine barley is easy to find in Chicago because of all the Polish people that live here, but it is not always super easy to find in other places. It is great because it cooks faster then regular barley.

**I like a bit of browning on top, but covering it with foil as you place in oven is also nice.

I have made stuffed cabbage with beef and rice then covered it with a tomato sauce or with veal and brown rice and placed it in a consomme’.

Just writing this makes me want to make it again. I can not tell you how delicious…

Pull up a chair, Elizabeth


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I love the way you write up your recipes!! this sounds so good and healthy! I will definitely make it for Eric and I!

Comment by Kris Spence

Hey thanks, Kris. It is one of those recipes that you can not believe it is healthy. Let me know how it goes… Elizabeth

Comment by behindthechair

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