Monday, August 17, 2009

Polish Cabbage Rolls (Golabki)

Last Friday our neighbors gifted us with a bunch of fresh produce. We received 3 zucchinis (one of which was probably 5 lbs and turned into 4 loaves of zucchini bread + a batch of zucchini cupcakes), 2 cucumbers and a red cabbage the size of my head. Okay, it's bigger than my head...

I've been trying to figure out what to make with this. I have never once bought cabbage, green or red, and outside of coleslaw I had no idea what to make. Thankfully for my recent trip to the Polish Festival, I knew that cabbage could be used to make cabbage rolls (Golabki).

I found a few recipes on line and ended up combining them to create my own version.

Polish Cabbage Rolls
{Sources: and}

16 cabbage leaves
1 lb Ground Beef, 93% Lean
1 lb Ground Turkey, 93% Lean
3 c. brown rice (cooked)
1 T. olive oil
1 white onion
1 carrot
1 celery stalk
2 garlic cloves
1 t. garlic powder
1 t. dried basil
1 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper
1/2 t. red pepper flakes
2 T. caraway seeds

16 oz tomato sauce
2 T. fat free Greek yogurt
1 T. brown sugar

Cut 16 leaves off of the cabbage head, place in boiling water until leaves are limp (2-3 minutes). Remove from water and set aside.
{Cooked leaves are on the left. The remaining cabbage will be used for a different meal this week...}

Sauté the onions, garlic, carrots and celery in the olive oil until vegetables are soft. In a bowl add the sautéed veggies, meat, rice, basil, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes and caraway seeds, mix this well. Preheat oven to 350°F.
Place about 2-4 Tbsp. of the meat mixture in the center of a cabbage leaf (depending on size of leaf); tuck in sides and roll to cover meat. {I rolled my leftover filling into meatballs and cooked them along with the cabbage rolls.} Place cabbage rolls, seam down, in a 9x13 baking dish.

Mix tomato sauce with the sugar and Greek yogurt; pour over rolls.
Cover and bake for 45-60 minutes.
{At the tail end of baking, I removed the cover (risked tomato sauce splashes in the oven) and turned on the boiler to get some additional color}

This meal had veggies, protein and carbohydrates, so I didn't serve it with anything else. As I plated Rich's serving the cabbage roll flipped, splashing sauce all over the plate. So aesthetics weren't that great, but I thought it was funny and I asked Rich to take a picture of it.
My plate worked out a little bit better...
All in all, these were delicious! Rich really seemed to like them, which is always considered a success. Apparently growing up he would get cabbage rolls at family events and large gatherings. So I was happy this meal brought back a touch of nostalgia, even if I used red instead of green cabbage.
Oh - the leftovers were even better! We will definitely be making these again!!

1 comment:

Dominika Kryjak said...

I'm so proud of you Nicole! I know they taste GOOD!!!