Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Stuffed Cabbage

I am honestly never a big fan of cabbage. White cabbage, red cabbage, whatever cabbage, it's simply not my favourite veggie. My mother used to tell me that cabbage gives nothing but water (not sure what's the truth in that) but my disliking cabbage comes from its bland taste. Unlike carrots that have sweetness or tomatoes that are rather sour, cabbage just felt so... not special for me.

Until I watched French Food at Home by Laura Calder the other week. I was about half time late when I saw Laura making this Stuffed Cabbage. So the recipe I am sharing below won't be by-the-book one. It might be absolutely different in taste with the real Stuffed Cabbage since I substituted the pork mince with the beef mince. But according to the French guy in the family, the dish was an absolute delish! How is that coming from a guy who doesn't like veggies?
Anyhoo, he was right. It was super tasty - and I am not being biased because it was my cooking. Remember that I was supposed to dislike cabbage. But it did indeed blow away my mind.
I also fell in love with the layers of cabbage and beef, not sure if you can see it in the pictures. If only I used the red cabbage as it actually should be, then maybe it'd look much more beautiful in presentation. But I'm telling you, this is already amazing!
You need to serve it on a plate with its delicious broth. Scatter it with fresh chopped scallions. Yumm...
Oh, and did you notice that I put some text on the pictures? It's because my annoying, but kind-hearted friend, Pyorr, said that I should protect my photos in any way possible. I actually used to do that a lot long time ago. But really, if people want to steal photos, they'll steal them. A mere text is so easy to erase with only stamp tool from Adobe Photoshop. But anyway, I think she had a point. If your house is in a thief-prone area, you'll put double locks, hire private security guards and put security cameras all around, right? There is still a chance that your house is going to get robbed, but at least you have put that much effort in protecting it. So, I'm watermarking my pictures from now on, though I still think it makes them uglier. :P

Enough babbling! Here goes the recipe.

Ingredients: 

  • A cabbage head; preferably red (it's got nicer texture and more vibrant colour)
  • 200 g beef mince (real stuffed cabbage uses pork mince, but the beef mince worked too! It's a good substitute for Muslim fellows who don't eat pork)
  • 5 pcs of green beans, cut into small pieces
  • 5 pcs of button mushrooms, cut into cubes
  • 3 pcs of scallions, chopped
  • a handful of black olives, drained and cut thinly
  • 1 beef cube, crunched
  • a pinch of ground cumin
  • 2 cloves of garlic, finely sliced
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions:
  1. Peel cabbage layer by layer. Be careful as not to wreck it. You need the cabbage layers intact to wrap the meat. 
  2. Remove the hard part of the cabbage so that it's easier to wrap.
  3. In a bowl of boiled water, dip the cabbage leaves for about 5 until they are slightly tender. Then blanch them in a bowl of iced water. This will make the leaves elastic and not easy to wreck.
  4. In a separate bowl combine the beef mince, chopped green beans, chopped button mushrooms, half of the scallions, the black olives, half of the garlic, the cumin, salt and pepper. Mix well.
  5. Make the soup from half litre of water combined with crunched beef cube, half of the garlic, salt and pepper.
  6. As the soup is boiling, take one cabbage leaf on to the cutting board and top it with the beef mixture. 
  7. Put another leaf on it and top again with the beef mixture. Do this until you have nice layered cabbage and beef and until you use all the beef mixture. 
  8. Take another cabbage leave and close the layers from the opposite direction so it will look like a cabbage ball.
  9. Steam the cabbage ball right on top of the soup for about 30 minutes.
  10. Take the stuffed cabbage out and cut from the centre in a pizza-like shape. Serve in a plate with some of the broth/soup you made and garnish with the rest of the chopped scallions.
  11. Eat with cooked rice.

3 comments:

imoet said...

We call it roll cabbage here. Cabbage is very sweet in spring time (=cheap!) so I cook cabbage based meal a lot lately.
Roll cabbage is one of my favorite, very yummy but easy- even iki can make it.
Tapi punyamu menggoda perut ditengah malam jeh!!

Carla Ardian said...

Is this rolled cabbage with the tomato sauce? I saw that type of rolled cabbage on Martha Stewart's website. Or is it more partisipatif Japanese style?

Carla Ardian said...

I hate iPhone autocorrect. Partisipatif there i meant particularly!!!

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