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Monday, September 17, 2012

Golumpki, Golabki, Golumpkies, Golumpkis or Gwumpki

No matter how you say it, make it, or cook it, it is still a delectable dish for the cooler weather we have had lately, not to mention a great way to use up the fresh from the garden or from the farmer's market head of cabbage.

Both my mom and my mother-in-law made their own version of this recipe. I have been able to write down the ingredients that they both used and they are pretty tasty recipes, but seem to be lacking a little something, something. I myself have even come up with a lazy version where you chop up the cabbage and mix it into the meat/rice mixture and sauce and bake it in a casserole dish, but I wanted to research recipes and make them the good old fashioned way. 

A few days ago I had picked up this wonderful head of cabbage at the farmers market and right away I knew that wanted to make stuffed cabbage rolls. I took to the computer to research recipes to find a combination of items that I thought would make a good tasting filling and sauce to match. This is what I came up with:

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls


1 1/2 lb. ground meat
1/2 lb. ground pork
½ cup green pepper, diced small
½ cup yellow onion, diced small
1 cup cooked rice (white or brown)
2 egg
1 tbs. chopped parsley
1 tsp. sweet Paprika
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 cup tomato ketchup
2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
½ cup milk
Salt and pepper to taste

Also needed:

1 medium-large head of green cabbage
1 lb. package sauerkraut

1 large can tomato soup
1 reg. can chicken broth
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tbsp. brown sugar
Salt and pepper to taste

Place sauerkraut in bottom of oven proof dish.

Remove outer edges from cabbage head and rinse.

Prepare a large pot of boiling water to submerge cabbage head.

Prepare meat filling by combing ground beef, ground pork, cooked rice, egg, parsley, onion, pepper, Paprika, allspice, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, milk and salt and pepper to taste.

Immerse head of cabbage into boiling water for 3 – 4 minutes until leaves are partially soft.

Remove head from water and let cool.

Once cooled, remove leaf from cabbage head. (keep water hot, you may have to repeat steps 5 & 6.

With a paring knife, trim down stem on the leaf. You can toss them or place them in the dish with the sauerkraut.

Fill bottom part of leaf with about 1/2 cup of meat filling.

Tucking in the left and right sides, roll up the meat filling into the cabbage leaf. Place in dish on top of sauerkraut.

Continue rolling leaves until meat filling is gone.

Chop remaining cabbage head into small piece and place into the pan with the sauerkraut.

Mix tomato soup, can of chicken broth, garlic, brown sugar and salt and pepper to taste.

Pour sauce over the cabbage rolls.

Cover pan with parchment paper first and then tightly with a layer of aluminum foil.
Bake at 350° for 2 hours.

This is a labor intensive recipe and it takes up a couple of hours to make the rolls and a couple more to bake them. However, it is well worth the time and effort.

In researching recipes, I found that some people use pork, while others use beef and still others use a mixture of both. I had beef on hand so I used that.

Keep the water boiling, you may need to redip the cabbage as you unwrap the outer leaves to roll

Ketchup, really? Yes, just do as the recipe says. The filling came out a nice texture and was very tasty and moist.

Tomato soup verses sauce? Yes again, believe me by the time this dish is done you will not even realize it is tomato soup.   

Would I have done anything differently?

I would have been better prepared to freeze some of the leftovers in advance. Or make it on a day when you are having quests for dinner. 

By all means let me know what you think when you try this recipe. I look forward to your comments.

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