Stuffed cabbage leaves or Golubtsy is another recipe that would be great to cook together with other people.
Stuffed cabbage leaves or Golubtsy is another recipe that would be great to cook together with other people. This is a traditional Eastern European one-pot meal and it’s laborious. It is a wonderfully flavored, rich, nutritious, and well-balanced meal. While this recipe is a bit labor intensive, it will yield 15-20 good-sized portions to be eaten right away or frozen for later. It’s almost like making dumplings, only instead of wrapping the meat in dough you wrap it in a vegetable. So much better for us!
Health Benefits Of Cabbage
Cabbage belongs to the crucifer family together with broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale and cauliflower. Like its relatives, cabbage is high in anti-cancer and detoxifying sulfur-containing compounds. It is also very high in vitamins K and C, and a good source of beta-carotenes. People traditionally used raw cabbage leaves to reduce swelling, for example of engorged breasts in breastfeeding mothers! In addition, Raw cabbage juice is an excellent folk remedy to heal stomach ulcers. Contemporary research backs up these old healing claims, confirming the effectiveness of raw cabbage juice healing of ulcers. If you come across Vitamin U, you should know that it comes cabbage juice, which you can make at home with even greater success. For the biggest health benefit, drink freshly made cabbage juice immediately.
Golubtsy – Stuffed cabbage leaves
2lb ground beef, grass fed
1lb ground lamb
1 head white cabbage
4 lamb shoulders blades, lamb chops bone in
1 ½ cup quinoa or rice
1 big onion, sliced
5-6 garlic cloves, minced
1 big bunch dill, parsley, cilantro or a combination of each, minced
1 big tomato, sliced or 1 cup Second Chance Tomatoes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
For the cabbage:
- Separate the cabbage leaves while making them soft and pliable by boiling the head of cabbage in a pot of water for about 10 minutes. Take the cabbage out and let it cool off for 10 minutes, reserving the water.
- Turn the cabbage over and cut the individual cabbage leaves at the stem. You can do this one leaf at a time starting with the outer-most leaf, or all at once as if you were cutting the core out of a tomato.
- After you take 10-15 leaves off you might find that the inside of the cabbage is not cooked and the leaves are not soft enough to come off the cabbage easily. In that case, place the under-cooked part of the cabbage back into the water and boil for another 5 minutes. Repeat the steps above.
For the stuffing:
- In a big skillet sauté onions in olive oil for about 5 minutes, until golden.
- Rinse quinoa or rice and add it to the onions, mixing together, adding enough cabbage water just covering the mixture, reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
- In a big bowl combine ground meats, garlic, half of bunch of herbs and the onion/quinoa or onion/rice mixture. Add salt (2 tsp) and pepper and mix well, use your hand at the end to ensure even distribution.
Putting it all together:
- Warm up some oil in a big pot and slightly brown the lamb chops on high heat, 3-4 minutes on each side. Turn off the heat.
- Take a cabbage leaf and place some stuffing in the middle, making sure you have enough cabbage on all sides to tuck in. Roll up, starting with the end of the leaf where it was attached to the stem.
- Place each cabbage roll in the pot on top of the lamb chops.
- Continue rolling cabbage leaves and packing them tightly into the pot until all the stuffing and leaves are used up. You might have 2 or 3 layers of cabbage rolls.
- Pour the leftover cabbage water into the pot with stuffed cabbage leaves, just to cover them and bring to a boil, make sure to skim off the impurities if they rise to the top of the pot. Lower the heat, add the tomatoes and simmer for about 45 minutes.
- Taste the broth and adjust the seasoning. Sprinkle the rest of the fresh herbs and take off the heat. Serve with sour cream or crème fraÎche if you don’t have dairy sensitivities. Enjoy with Pickled Carrot with Ginger or Crunchy Dill Pickles.