This recipe is cool because you can do all sorts of variations on the same theme. I chose to make an Italian style stuffed cabbage with pasta sauce. Depending on your menu you may want to try seasoning your filling with different herbs and spices. Here’s how I made it-
1 large chinese cabbage
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, diced
1 red pepper, finely chopped
1 lb. ground beef
1 qt. “traditional” Italian pasta sauce (save ½ for the end)
2 cups extra sharp cheddar, shredded
¼ cup finely chopped parsley
2 teaspoons black pepper
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
Sautee the ground beef in olive oil in a large frying pan at medium-low heat. Once browned, add chopped onion, diced garlic and chopped red pepper. Continue sautéing the meat and vegetables until tender. Reduce heat to warm and stir in a ½ quart of pasta sauce. Stir in black pepper and crushed red pepper. Remove from heat.
Pull apart the cabbage, leaf by leaf, gently wash them, and put them into a large pot half filled with water. Cook the cabbage until it is flexible. This is so you will be able to roll them. Remember, do not bring the water to boil so as not to overcook the leaves. Drain the cabbage and quickly spray with cold water.
On a large cutting board lay out cabbage leaves. Place a large spoonful of the meat sauce on each leaf. Seal each leaf by rolling from the bottom of the stem to the top. Place each roll on a large glass baking dish greased with olive oil. Distribute the remaining meat mixture over the cabbage rolls. Pour 1/2 quart of pasta sauce over the rolls.
Bake for 25 minutes at 350˚F. Remove from oven and sprinkle shredded cheese over the cabbage rolls. Top with finely chopped parsley. Heat in oven for an additional 5 minutes. Remove and serve over rice.