Russian Cabbage Rolls by Raia's Recipes

Beware: while most of my recipes are super simple, this one is not. But it is super tasty.  : )

Russian Cabbage Rolls by Raia's Recipes

When my family and I were living in Far East Russia, we had cabbage just about any way you can imagine (and potatoes just about any way you can imagine, too. . .). Капуста (or ‘poosta’ as my kids call it) became one of our best friends, and we continued to consume large quantities of it upon moving back to the States.

Russian Cabbage Rolls by Raia's Recipes

Sadly, don’t remember where I found the original recipe I adapted this one from, but I do remember it was a Russian girl’s blog, so you can count on it’s authenticity. Although Russians typically put sour cream on everything (ok, not everything), I left that out to make it dairy-free.

Russian Cabbage Rolls by Raia's Recipes

To make the meal fully Russian, just add some black tea and brown bread and you’re good to go!  : )

Note: this meal takes about 1 1/2 hours to make, from raw cabbage to hot-on-your-plate, just so you can be prepared. But it IS worth it! 

{Russian Cabbage Rolls}
Free of gluten, eggs, dairy, and sugar.

1 cabbage
1 c. cooked rice
1 lb. ground beef/venison/whatever
1/2 large onion, minced
3-4 T. minced garlic
1 t. sea salt
1/4-1/2 t. pepper
1/4 t. chili powder (optional)
1 t. cinnamon
1/4-1/3 c. extra-virgin olive oil
1 qt. homemade stock
2 c. diced tomatoes, with juice

Trim the bottom off a head of cabbage, place it in a large stock pot, cover with water, and boil for 5-7 minutes. Carefully pull off the outer leaves and drain them. Place the back in the water and boiling for about 20 more minutes, or until tender.

While the cabbage is cooking, cook the rice as usual. Place one cup of cooked rice in a large mixing bowl. Set aside. Caramelize onions. Add garlic and sauté until tender. Prepare the filling by mixing together cooked rice, raw ground meat, garlic, onions, salt, pepper, chili powder, and cinnamon. Cover and refrigerate until needed.

Remove the tender cabbage from pot and drain. Once the leaves are cool enough to handle, detach leaves from each other and use a knife to remove the tough vein from the outside of each leaf. Place a small amount of filling into the center of each cabbage leaf and wrap it carefully like a little present. Place each roll seam-side down on a plate while you finish wrapping the rest.

Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large pan (or the emptied stock-pot) and saute half of the rolls until lightly browned on both sides (just a few minutes per side). Set browned rolls aside while you saute the remaining rolls. When all the rolls have been browned, pour in the stock and bring to a simmer, scraping the browned pieces off the bottom of the pot. Add the tomatoes and the browned rolls to the simmering stock. Cover and simmer for about 40 minutes.

{This recipe is shared at Allergy Friendly Lunchbox Love, Allergy Free Wednesdays, Clever Chicks, Fight Back Friday, Foodie Fridays, From the Farm, Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways, Gluten Free Fridays, Gluten Free Tuesdays, Green Living Thursdays, Healthy 2Day Wednesdays, Homestead Barn, Homesteaders Hop, Mama Moments Mondays, Mostly Homemade Mondays, Mouthwatering Mondays, Teach Me Tuesdays, Share Your Creativity, Show & Tell Saturday, Simple Lives Thursday, Simple Meals Friday, Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays, Strut Your Stuff Saturday, Tasty Traditions, Wellness Wednesdays, What’s Shakin’, and What To Do Weekends.}