Monday, 27 July 2015

Stuffed Cabbage

When you grow prize winning cabbages (well, they're not technically prize winning because we haven't entered them into any competitions and they haven't won any prizes, but if we did, they would), you make stuffed cabbage. Then you stuff your stuffed cabbage into your stuffed cabbage loving face.

Stuffed Cabbage
adapted from here
Serves 4

For the Filling:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
500g minced beef
50g mortadella, blitzed in a small food processor until finely chopped
1 egg
2 tablespoons milk
1/2 cup panko
1 teaspoon sea salt flakes

For the Cabbage:
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 head of white cabbage, to give you 12 large leaves (you can patch any small or torn leaves with smaller leaves)
1 tablespoon flour, for dusting

For the Sauce:
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 fresh bay leaves
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon white wine
1 x 400g can crushed tomatoes
250ml chicken stock
1 tablespoon butter

Make the Filling:
Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and a pinch of salt and cook for 5 minutes until soft but not brown. Scrape into a large mixing boil and set aside to cool.

Once the onion has cooled, add the beef, mortadella, egg, milk, panko and salt and mix thoroughly until well combined. Set aside in the refrigerator to chill for 30 minutes.

Prepare the Cabbage:
Cut the core out of the bottom of the cabbage. Bring a large pan of water to the boil, add the salt and submerge the whole head of cabbage in to it. Boil for 5 minutes, until the leaves start to soften and separate. Lift the cabbage out of the boiling water with a slotted spoon and immediately plunge it into ice water to stop the cooking process. Separate the leaves (they should come apart easily), and lay them on kitchen paper and pat dry. Remove the thick stem from the centre of each leaf with a sharp knife. Set aside.

Sprinkle a baking sheet with some flour. Using an ice cream scoop, scoop 12 mounds of the filling onto the tray and sprinkle the tops with the remaining flour. The mounds should have a light dusting of flour all over. Set aside.

With the stem end of a cabbage leaf facing you, place a mound of filling into the centre of the leaf and roll it up, tucking the sides of the leaf in as you go. Roll it up tightly and secure the end with a toothpick. Repeat for the remaining leaves and filling.

Make the Sauce:
Put the oil into a large Dutch oven and heat on medium. Add the bay leaves and crushed garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the wine, crushed tomatoes and salt and bring to boil. Place the cabbage rolls, seam side down into the sauce. Make sure they fit snuggly and are in one layer. Add the chicken stock. Cut a circle of foil the same diameter as the pot and place it directly down on top of the rolls and sauce. Place the lid on the pot and simmer gently for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the butter. Serve with mashed potatoes/spaetzle/bread... or your favourite carbohydrate. It's the only way to go.


  1. Delicious... especially in winter.

  2. When I was little my Babci (Grandmother) would make delicious golabkis with her sisters and speak Polish all afternoon. These remind me of those - deliciously fresh, the real deal!

    1. My mothers best friend was a gorgeous Hungarian woman and when I was a kid, the two of them used to get together and have stuffed cabbage and poppy seed cake making sessions, while I licked the bowls and listened to their girl talk. Good times.

  3. Your cabbages are just so cute!!! And stuffed cabbage are a must back in Quebec. My dad loves it so much and you remind me that I have to make some over the winter. Now it's too hot hehe! I'll try your recipe for sure :)

  4. Love stuffed cabbages. How do you get them to stay so neat???!!!

  5. your clever smart creative choice of mortadella is making my mind and tummy explode. love love love