Stuffed Cabbage Rolls with a Rich Tomato Sauce
As the wintry season is upon us, I fancied an old winter warmer family favourite that is both comfort food as well as healthy!
This is a vegetarian dish made with quorn mince but you can use beef mince instead or, if you don’t like quorn, use a mix of rice, lentils, nuts & seeds. Now, I tend to cook by taste rather than completely following a recipe so the following list of ingredients is approximately what I used because it tasted good, so please feel free to adapt to your taste buds! Also, this is just one version of many I have cooked with different ingredients and I love experimenting so the end result is never quite the same as before! This stuffed cabbage recipe is quite easy to make and assemble and can be made ahead of time and baked just before serving for between 45-60 minutes at 200 degrees.
INGREDIENTS – for 4-6 people
1 bag quorn mince 1 savoy cabbage (18 leaves)
1 lg onion finely chopped 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
4 tbspn dark soy sauce 1tsp (not heaped) chilli flakes
2 tbspn mixed seeds 1 tsp dried oregano
1 tbspn olive/rapeseed oil
Approx 750ml tomato sauce made with tinned or fresh tomatoes, tomato puree (optional) garlic, 1/2 veg stock cube, seasoning and whizzed until smooth.
1. Half fill a large pan with water and bring to a boil.
2. There are two ways to prepare the cabbage leaves:
I removed as many large cabbage leaves as I could and cut the thickest bit of the stem away from each one. Add 2/3 leaves at a time to the boiling water, remove when softened and set to one side. I then added the rest of the cabbage ‘ball’ to the water and removed the leaves as they softened.
Alternatively, remove the core from the bottom of the cabbage and add the cabbage head to the boiling water and cook for 5 minutes. As the leaves soften, use tongs to gently remove the leaves, pat dry and leave to one side. You can use the remaining cabbage as part of the filling or for another use.
3. For the filling, fry the onion, garlic & oregano in the oil. When soft, add the quorn mince (or alternative), mixed seeds, chilli flakes and soy sauce. I also added a little water to keep the mixture moist.
4. To make the cabbage rolls:
Lay out 1 cabbage leaf (with the spine of the leaf on the work surface). Depending on the size of the leaf, put 1 dessert spoon of the filling in the centre of the leaf (as the leaves got smaller, I used a heaped teaspoon).
Fold both sides over the filling and roll up. Repeat with the remaining leaves.
5. Spread a layer of the tomato sauce in a baking dish. Place the stuffed cabbage rolls, seam side down, on the sauce.
6. Pour the remaining sauce over the rolls and bake, covered, for about 25 minutes, then uncover for the remaining 20 minutes, adding grated cheese if desired!
I usually serve this with some steamed brown basmati rice or on its own with more vegetables or a green salad.