Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Cabbage Rolls

What - cabbage again?! Okay, okay, calm down. Jaime and I made cabbage rolls for Mother's Day - because it's their fave - and after realizing how simple they are to make, it inspired me to experiment with a vegetarian version. They turned out delicious, recipe below.
Here's my question: What exactly is the point of stuffing things, be it zucchini, cabbage, squash, or whatever? When you stuff something you have two factors; the stuffing and that which is being stuffed. These two factors should - in my opinion - compliment each other equally. If the two factors are not absolutely equal, then one is either detracting from the overall dish, or, it is just a side note, in which case - what's the point? For my cabbage rolls, the filling was really, just, mmm - really excellent (even Jim scarfed down 2 big bowls of it). Then, after it was rolled up in the cabbage and baked and everything, I would say it was still pretty darn good, but again I was left with the feeling of, Was That Really Necessary? I felt the same way about my stuffed zucchini. I mean, why not just chop up the cabbage or zucchini and saute it along with everything else? Why stuff it? But I know there must be a good reason for stuffing things. So, now I'm on a quest to create a really good stuffed vegetable dish where both the inside and the out are equal members of society.
Here's the basic recipe for what I made:
Filling Ingredients (star of the show!):
Jasmine Rice (I undercooked this slightly before baking it, and wish I had undercooked it more, it was a little too soft in the end)
Chick Peas
Quorn Grounds (not really necessary, but I added it just for the extra protein)
Red Onion
Green Pepper
Fresh chopped parsley
Fresh chopped mint (this made it really good!)
Red pepper flakes
Curry powder
Bragg's Amino Acid (soy sauce is fine of course)
...I think that's it.
For the tomato sauce I just pureed a can of stewed tomatoes, a little tomato paste, sugar (well, okay, Splenda), apple cider vinegar (yes, Jaime, more than you would have liked!), cumin, salt/pepper, ...and I think that's it?
To make the cabbage rolls, it's really easy. I used savoy cabbage here and I must say, I like savoy much better for this dish. Savoy cabbage has a lighter, more delicate texture than regular cabbage, plus it's a little greener (so, prettier!). Just put the entire head of cabbage in boiling water for a few minutes. Then cut off each leaf, remove the tough, thick part of the seam (stem?), and roll it up - it doesn't have to be perfect. Ladle the tomato sauce over the whole thing, and bake for about 1 hour in 350 degree oven.

1 comment:

Jaime said...

Dylan and I are going to eat the leftover stuffed cabbage tonight! We have to plan it when only he and I are home, as the 'Pickies' won't crush the cabbage. I'm sure Dylan will slather cottage cheese over it....Whenever I make sauteed cabbage and onions that is his condiment. It's really kind of good..the cold/hot thing. Mmmmm I can't wait! I never even tried what we made the Mammas. Skye if you want to come over tonight and eat dinner with us, there is plenty?

I like your take on the cabbage rolls!...Im going to try a batch and Indian it up with some cashews, golden raisins, curry, garahm, tumeric, maybe even tofu crumbled up!