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Thursday, February 27, 2014

Grandma Katrina's Russian Cabbage Rolls Golubtsy ♥

So I decided to make something warm and healthy since I was at the horse stable earlier and was freeeezing! 
I needed some comfort food, I fell and bruised my tailbone and messed up my back! Oh well I am used to it after years and years of hunter/jumper competition horsebackriding.
 Here is my grandma Katrina's russian recipe for stuffed cabbage rolls, only I made them healthier! ♥ 

Ingredients ♥ 

1 big loose head of white cabbage
1 lb turkey ground 
1 + 1 onions, chopped
1/2 cup rice pre-boiled in 2 cups of water( I omit this for a low carb option)
1 small carrot, finely grated 
2 big ripe tomatoes, diced
3 tbsp olive oil 
Red pepper (optional)
Filtered water, about 1 - 1 1/4 cups 
1 big pot to boil cabbage
1 frying pan 
1 Dutch oven or big shallow pot with lid
Preparation time: about 2 hours


  To be able to wrap meat in cabbage leaves you have to slightly boil the cabbage to soften it.
In a big pot bring water almost to a boil. Cut (slightly, but do not tear off from the head) a few cabbage leaves near the root and place the whole cabbage head in hot water. It should be covered completely. If your pot is not big enough, you have to carefully turn the cabbage head to soften all sides.  Let it boil on low heat for a few minutes, then using two forks, turn the cabbage head in a handy position to cut off the leaves that are already softened. 
  Set them on a separate dish to cool. Do this with the rest of the leaves while you can: the smallest leaves are too wrinkled to be used for rolls, so the center part of cabbage head is usually discarded.

When the leaves are cool enough to handle, cut off the thickest parts of the leaves with a sharp knife. Tap the leaves dry with paper towel.

Rinse uncooked rice in cold water, drain, and boil for 7 min in 2 cups of water - rinse in cold water and drain, then use in the filling.

Prepare the filling: mix well meat, rice, 1 chopped onion, salt, black pepper, carrot, 1/2 cup water.

To make a roll, place a cabbage leaf on a board, scoop out about 2 tbsp meat, and place as you see on the picture. Then fold and press slightly the leaf at the thickest part nearest to you, then fold the sides, then roll it away from you, and form a  tidy pocket.
Make sure that the final flap is not hanging, but is nicely bent.

Your rolls will be of different  sizes and shades of green , the biggest will hold about 2 tb spoonfuls of meat, the smallest 1 tb spoonful. You can put more meat or less,Heat oil in the pan on medium heat, and caramelize your rolls on both sides, begin with the side where the end flap is, to secure the shape of the roll and prevent unwrapping.

Traditionally the rolls are just boiled, but this is how they were cooked in my family. Caramelized cabbage gives the dish a completely different aroma and taste.
Make a bed of 1 onion and diced tomatoes in a shallow pot with lid, add salt and red pepper, if you wish. Transfer caramelized rolls on the bottom and arrange in an overlapping manner rather tightly, with the final flap facing down.

Fill the pot, sprinkle with salt, add about 1/2 - 2/3 cup boiling water, cover, put on medium to low heat, and simmer for about 1 hour. The cabbage must be completely soft, and the meat will be ready by that time. Try not to overcook cabbage.
Serve them hot with chilled sour cream on top! enjoy! ♥ 


  1. I love this. I have tasted these before but never attempted to make them. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Your welcome! Im glad to share my grandma's old russian recipes! :)