Wednesday, September 23, 2009

September 20, 2009: Cabbage rolls

Theresa's entry in our winter recipes/800 posts competition was stuffed cabbage rolls, originally from La Dolce Vegan. The idea is pretty straightforward - steam a cabbage, use the middle to make a delicious filling, and then wrap the filling in some of the outer leaves. Unfortunately, we didn't quite get this right. The little parcels turned out a bit chewy and difficult to eat, and the cabbage leaves ended up overpowering the filling flavours. Sorry Theresa - I'm sure the blame is ours rather than the recipe's (the use of an ill-fitting saucepan/colander combo as our steamer probably didn't help). The filling itself, with the bulgur, mushrooms and cabbage mush was appropriately hearty and Cindy enjoyed the leftovers as a toasted sandwich filling. We served the rolls with roasted sweet potato and radish as suggested by Theresa - any roasted vegies would work well but the radishes were a particularly excellent idea and a new one for us!

Cabbage rolls

2 cups tomato sauce
1 large half-cabbage
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups mushrooms, chopped
1 cup burghul
1.5 cups water
1 porcini stock cube
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1 teaspoon hot paprika
a few shakes of cayenne
olive oil

Steam the half-cabbage whole (if you see what I mean), and then peel off the large outer leaves - as many as you'll want rolls. Slice up the cabbage innards reasonably finely.

Fry the onion, garlic and cabbage in the oil, until things start to soften nicely.

Add in the mushrooms and burghul and fry some more.

Pour in the water, crumble the stock cube through and add in the spices. Simmer for a while, stirring every so often.

Stir through the walnuts and kill the heat. This is your filling!

Spoon the filling into the steamed cabbage leaves, and wrap it up into a neat little parcel.

Place the rolls in a baking tray, pour the tomato sauce over the top and then bake at 180 degrees for about half an hour.


  1. the green of those leaves looks impressive - the purchase of my baccarat stockpot with a steamer insert is one of my favourite kitchen saucepans if you are looking for other steamer options - and roasted radish sounds bizarre - I always think of these as salad veg

  2. Johanna, I would never have thought to roast radishes either! They're a bit less mustardy and quite different to the other root vegetables we typically roast.