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Author Notes: Thanksgiving in our family meant a splendid array of signature dishes, prepared with the upmost care and attention. Everyone had a special dish that everyone loved to share at the holiday table. These cabbage rolls are based upon my Grandma Rita's method, bacon withheld to consider it 'vegetarian'. Although I would suggest the use of bacon if you are not strictly serving vegetarians at your holiday feast. —midnitechef
1 or 2
heads of green cabbage
clove of garlic, minced
cup uncooked short grain rice
jar marinara (preferably homemade canned tomatoes)
- Cook the rice with a good pinch of sea salt. Allow the rice to cool so it will be easier to handle.
- Core the cabbage and dunk into gently boiling water. As the outter layers soften, peel them off with tongs and set aside to drain.
- Saute the onion and garlic in a tablespoon of olive oil. (Variation: render about 6 slices of bacon and use a tablespoon of the fat)
- Combine the rice with the onion and garlic. This is the filling for the leaves. (Variation: include crumbled bacon with the rice)
- Spoon a thin layer of tomato sauce on the bottom of a 9" x 13" casserole dish.
- Roll about 1 1/2 tablespoons of the rice mixture in a single cabbage leaf, starting at the stem side. Fold the sides in as you go, like a burrito.
- Place the rolls into the casserole dish, seam side down. Tuck them all into the dish pretty close together, this will prevent them from opening up while baking.
- Once the casserole is full, cover generously with additional tomato sauce. Bake, covered, for an hour. Remove the cover and bake for another 15 minutes.
- Tip: The tomato sauce plays a forefront role when you first taste a cabbage roll, use the best sauce you can for this recipe. A homemade batch of canned tomatoes thrown in the blender with some salt and pepper, then reduced over medium-low heat would be favorable.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Dirt Cheap Dinner
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Vegetarian Holiday Side