Saturday, August 14, 2010

Stuffed Cabbage with Sweet and Sour Tomato Sauce


As I surfed the internet I came across Tyler Florence’s, Dad’s Meatloaf with Tomato Relish recipe and thought that the tomato relish would make for a good sweet and sour sauce for stuffed cabbage.

The tomato relish was on the sweet side so the meat stuffing needed to be savory to offset the sweetness of the sauce. I accomplished this by making a basic meatloaf recipe keeping all sweet flavors out.

The one thing that I would adjust the next time I make this dish would be to sub the 1 ½ cups of ketchup (the recipe calls for) with 1 cup of tomato sauce and a ½ cup of ketchup to give the sauce more of a balance of sweet and salty.
I prefer my stuffed cabbage filling to be moist and dense, more like a meatloaf, serving my rice along side instead of inside of the stuffing. If you prefer a looser filling; mix in ½ cup of raw rice or 1 cup of cooked rice in with your meat mixture when making the stuffing. If you choose to use raw rice; cook the stuffed cabbages for an hour instead of 45 min.
As I was writing down the recipe I realized that it sounds like a lot of work for a not so exciting dish. I made these stuffed cabbages knowing all the steps ahead of time and truly not thinking about the process at the time. But after writing down the steps, I would recommend that you only make this dish if you are a lover of stuffed cabbage with sweet and sour sauce. Which I am…

1 large cabbage
2 pounds ground beef
3 slices white bread, crust removed and diced small
¼ cup water
1 whole egg
1 tsp Worcestershire saue
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. black pepper
PREP THE CABBAGE: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. With a paring knife remove the core. Place the whole cabbage in the boiling water and gently remove one cabbage leaf at a time with a tong and place on the side. You will need at least 8 large leaves or 16 med. leaves to wrap 8 stuffed cabbages.
MAKE THE STUFFING: Place the bread, water, egg, Worcestershire, salt & pepper in a large bowl and mix well. Add ground beef and mix again. Divide meat into 4 sections and make 2 portions out of each quarter to end up with 8 portions.
WRAP THE STUFFED CABBAGE: Remove the tough outer vein from the bottom of each cabbage leaf and discard. Place cabbage leaf with the bottom facing you. Place a portion of meat in the lower half of the leaf and fold the bottom over the filling. Then fold in both sides and roll the filling away from you to wrap the filling completely in the cabbage leaf. Place the cabbage roll seam side down in an oven proof casserole dish.
COOK: Pour about 1 cup of tomato relish over cabbage rolls and cover with foil. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minute. Uncover and cook for another 15 minutes.
SERVE: with tomato relish on the side.
2 Tbsp. oil
1 large onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 large red bell peppers, finely diced
1 15 oz. can Italian stewed tomatoes, drained and broken into small pieces
1 ½ cups ketchup
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
½ tsp. kosher salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
In a large sauce pot over med heat add oil, onions and garlic and cook until onions are soft. Add red bell peppers and cook for another couple of minutes to soften. Add the drained tomatoes, ketchup, Worcestershire, salt and pepper. Let simmer for 5 minutes and set aside.

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