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  Added: Apr 11, 2006  •  Visited (2764)  •  Print version Print this recipe (144)  •  eMail recipe eMail recipe  •  Write review  •  Not rated Rate this recipe
 
Stuffed Cabbage Leaves With Sauerkraut
(Sarmale)
What You Need:
  • 1 pound fresh sauerkraut
  • A 2½-to 3-pound white cabbage
  • ¼ cup long-grain unconverted white rice
  • 1½ pounds lean ground pork
  • 3 cups finely chopped onions
  • 1 teaspoon crumbled dried thyme
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 quarter-pound stick), cut into small bits
  • 1 cup tomato puree, mixed with 1½ cups water
  • ¼ teaspoon ground hot red pepper (cayenne)
  • 1 cup finely chopped green pepper
  • 6 lean bacon slices
  • 4 tomatoes, cut lengthwise into quarters
  •  

    How To Cook:
    1. Drain the sauerkraut, wash it under cold running water, and let it soak in cold water for 10 to 20 minutes, depending upon its acidity. A handful at a time, squeeze the sauerkraut until it is dry. Set aside in a bowL

    2. Remove the bruised and tough outer leaves of the cabbage and wash the head under cold running water. Drop it into a large pot of boilingwater and cook briskly for about 10 minutes.

    3. Remove the cabbage withtongs, but let the water continue to boil. Carefully peel off as many of theouter leaves as you can without tearing them. Then return the cabbage to the boiling water and cook for a few minutes longer.

    4. Again peel off thesoftened outer leaves. Repeat the process until you have detached 12 perfect leaves. Pat them dry with paper towels and set them aside.

    5. Bring 1 quart of water to a boil over high heat and stir in the rice. Boilbriskly, uncovered, for 10 minutes, or until partially cooked. Drain therice in a sieve or colander, run cold water over it and set aside.

    6. Grind the pork together with ½ cup of the onions through the finestblade of a meat grinder into a deep bowl. Add the rice, thyme and salt,knead vigorously with both hands, then beat with a wooden spoon untilthe mixture is smooth and fluffy.

    7. Lay the cabbage leaves side by side and, with a small knife, trim the base of each leaf of its tough rib end. Place about ½ cup of the pork fillingin the center of each leaf (smaller leaves will take less), and roll upeach leaf tightly, tucking in the ends to make a neat oblong package.

    8. Preheat the oven to 350. Melt the butter over moderate heat in aheavy 3- to 4-quart casserole.

    9. When the foam begins to subside, add the2½ cups of onions and, stirring frequently, cook for about 5minutes, or until they are soft and translucent but not brown.

    10. Add thepuree-and-water mixture and ground red pepper and bring to aboil. Then with a fork stir the contents of the pan into the sauerkraut.

    11. Spread about one third of the mixture on the bottom of the casserole.Arrange 6 of the cabbage rolls side by side on top, then sprinkle themwith 1/3 cup of the green pepper.

    12. Cover the rolls with half of the remainingsauerkraut mixture, arrange the rest of the cabbage rolls on topand again sprinkle them with another 1/3 cup of the green pepper.

    13. Addthe rest of the sauerkraut mixture and pour in any liquid remaining in the bowl. Sprinkle with the final 1/3 cup of green pepper and arrange the bacon strips on top.

    14. Bring to a boil on top of the stove, cover the casserole tightly, and bake in the middle of the oven for 1 hour. Then arrangethe tomato quarters in one layer across the top of the bacon, recover, andbake ½ hour longer.

    15. Serve at once, directly from the casserole. Pork sarmale1/8 traditionallyaccompanied by mamaliga.

    NOTE: Sarmaleis characterized in Romania by the acidulated flavor offermented cabbage leaves. To ferment a cabbage, place it in an 8- to 10- quart casserole and cover with 6 quarts of cold water. Add 1½ cups ofsalt and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, partially covered, for10 minutes. Place a heatproof plate on top of the cabbage to keep it sub-and set it aside for 3 days. Separate the large leaves, drain, and use in place of the fresh cabbage leaves described above.
     
    Serving Size: about 12 cabbage rolls
     This recipe is also available in:
    Cuisine » Europe » Romania
    Main Ingredient » Vegetables » Cabbage
    Main Ingredient » Vegetables » Sauerkraut
    Main Ingredient » Meat & Poultry » Pork
    Dish » Main Course

     





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