Golubstzi (Cabbage Rolls)


We grew up enjoying Golubtzi, Голубцы, a Russian version of cabbage rolls. I didn’t develop a taste for cabbage until my adult years so I’d peel off the cabbage and just enjoy the filling. Today I really enjoy cabbage in all it’s cooked or uncooked forms! Once you get the cabbage leaves ready to go this is a simple recipe to make. This is my mother’s version. There are many other recipes that differ from hers.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of cabbage
  • 2 pounds ground beef, 15% fat or higher
  • 1-1/2 cups cooked rice cooled
  • 1/2 onion, grated
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • 1 can condensed tomato soup, (approx. 10-3/4 ounces)
  • 1- 8 ounce can tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 1-1/2 cups sour cream
  • 2 cups water

Method:

  1. Core the cabbage leaving it whole.
  2. Boil the head of cabbage in a pot of water until leaves separate easily.
  3. Drain leaves and let them cool while you prepare the filling.
  4. Combine the ground beef, rice, onion, salt, pepper, and parsley.
  5. Once the leaves are cool enough to handle you can trim some of the thick vein of the cabbage leaf to make it easier to fold.
  6. Place about 1/3 cup of ground beef mixture onto a cabbage leaf and fold edges over and roll up.
  7. Place in baking dish with folded seams down.
  8. Continue until you use up the ground beef mixture and cabbage leaves.
  9. Saute the chopped onion in a little oil until it is translucent.
  10. Add soup, tomato sauce, ketchup, and water, mix well and bring to a boil.
  11. Add a little of this sauce to the sour cream to temper it and then add the sour cream mixture to the sauce and mix well.
  12. Pour the sauce over the cabbage rolls.
  13. Bake in a 350 degree oven for an hour or longer, till hamburger is fully cooked.
  14. Yield: 12-18 Cabbage Rolls depending on size of your meat balls.

Serve with your favorite green side dish and some good bread to soak up the sauce!

Tips:
You may need two baking dishes to accommodate more than 12 rolls.
While the whole head of cabbage is cooking in the pot I use tongs to remove the leaves gradually as they start to release from the head of cabbage and put them on a kitchen towel to cool. I keep checking as I prepare the other steps in the recipe.
I use a sharp paring knife to trim the vein starting in the center of the thick vein away from me to the outer thicker part of the vein. This makes it easier to fold the cabbage around the meat.

One of our sons doesn’t tolerate milk products so I made a small batch of the Golubtsi and covered them with the sauce before I added the sour cream to the rest of the sauce. We find that using hamburger that is 15% fat or more is better for these as the meat that has less fat in it can be dry.

I originally shared this recipe on the Mennonite Girls Can Cook blog but wanted to have it here on my blog, too.

Enrich:

:to improve the quality of (something) : to make (something) better, etc.

Our family has been enriched with the addition of another daughter in law this year. Dan and Jamie are a team that yield new things for our family to enjoy.

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Don’t tell anyone but I do not can. My mother canned but it’s not something I’ve tried or am comfortable trying. Jamie does can. Dan and Jamie plant a garden and they have fruit trees on their acreage in the country. They have apple trees. They use their bounty well by canning some of the excess.

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Their salsa is amazing and we have gone through 3 of these large jars of it in the last few weeks. We are so happy they shared their canned bounty with us! Their land is not a farm at this point so instead of farm to table we’ll call it land to table!

We appreciate the fact that our son is not alone on his acreage anymore but has a lovely wife by his side to enrich his life and ours!

A Merry Hummus Appetizer

Do you need a fun idea for a Christmas Appetizer?

 

I posted the directions on how to make these hummus Christmas Trees on the Mennonite Girls Can Cook Blog.

You can be more creative than me with some diced cucumber and diced red bell pepper to make more ornaments and garland. A yellow pepper star would be cute on top, too.

We’ve had lots of rain here in the Pacific Northwest with many rivers at flood levels. We are getting another round of rain today. It’s great decorating and baking weather if we keep our power! How are things in your neck of the woods?

Photobucket is holding all my photos from 2007-2015 hostage on their site. All my photos that I stored and uploaded from that site are now big ugly black and grey boxes with a message to pay big bucks to get them restored to my blog. It will take me a long time to restore thousands of posts.

Still Feasting…

…instead of fasting. Soon I will have to resume my de-fluffing but Dear and I went on a quick getaway to the Olympic Peninsula this week on a whim. Spent the night in Port Angeles after driving to the northwestern most point in the contiguous U.S.A. I have a few posts to show you of the beautiful things we saw but today I’m just going to fess up on all the good eats we enjoyed in just one day!

To go on this adventure we had to take a ferry from Edmonds to Kingston on the Kitsap Peninsula.

Our first food stop after disembarking the ferry and driving to the Olympic Peninsula was the Oak Table Cafe in Sequim. You cross the Hood Canal Bridge from the Kitsap Peninsula to get to the Olympic Peninsula.

Their specialty is an Apple pancake that you see above. It’s kind of like a souffle and it’s really enough sweetness for 4 people. I didn’t eat the whole thing. It was delicious and for me a once in a lifetime experience. So that started our eating experience for this day.

After driving out to and coming back from land’s end we checked into our B & B and got a recommendation for dinner.

Happy to report Dear now has another drink to copy for my pleasure called Old Mexico.

After my very sweet start to the day I was happy to end with a delicious savory surf and turf choice for dinner. We had a salad and a Dungeness Crab cake for our starters. I’ll show our B & B breakfast in another post…

I hope you aren’t hungry or dieting while reading this post! We are back home and back to cleaning and sorting and tucking away and throwing things out at this old house. We are in for another hot weekend here in the Seattle area. How are you doing?

I’m avoiding talking about the news because it is so troubling to me and I know many of you share my feelings. My heart and prayers go out to the families who lost their brave Marines yesterday and to those who were injured…may God comfort them and help us all.

Eggs-cellent

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Click over to the Mennonite Girls Can Cook Blog to get the recipe for Gluten free Ranchero sauce for Huevos Rancheros and other Mexican dishes. We served this dish when my niece and her husband were visiting in June. My niece is Gluten and Lactose intolerant so I had to come up with a breakfast that would work for all of us. This recipe got the thumbs up from her and my son who is lactose intolerant and from the rest of us who don’t have to watch our gluten and lactose intake.

Last night my son, nephew and grand nephew attended the Seattle Sounders Soccer Game. My nephew got this photo of me with the few, the proud, the Marine Corp band. I enjoyed a fun back and forth with these Marines.

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And here’s my son, nephew and grand nephew…

10553416_10204402153082185_2743159487908005648_nWe had a good time in the sun even though our team lost.

Today at this old house the bath/shower tile surround is going in. Should be a full day of work here. Hope you all have a good Tuesday.

Adios Pears and Summer!

I’m going to participate in Kathleen’s Let’s Dish this week with a table set for Dear’s birthday and a show and tell of what I did with all my pears from my tree.

A combination of lavender and green with the last of the fresh lavender from my bushes for the center of the table. I liked the look of the round shimmery green placemats I bought on clearance at Fred Meyer for 99 cents each. The purple glasses and green glasses are from World Market. The napkins are from Anthropologie but I purchased them at Goodwill.

Now for my pear experiments…

Quartered fresh pears tossed in sugar and quick cooking oats, butter, lemon juice, and a little flour. I topped that mix with pastry shells split and laid on top and baked till the shells were golden.

My first pear tart looked good but the crust was wrong…

My second pear tart that I made for Dear’s birthday dinner was more successful. The crust is a keeper and I’ll be posting the recipe on Mennonite Girls Can Cook in October.

Pear sauce goes a long way. Here it is with buttermilk pancakes. Yummy. We also had fresh cut pears with lemon juice and sugared lightly as a topping for buttermilk pancakes. I finally pulled out those strawberry bordered plates to use before fall is upon us. I bought them at Goodwill.

Last but not least a few cups of fresh pears peeled, cored, and chopped then sugared well for my last addition to my Smirntopf! This will be ready to enjoy at Christmas time personally and as gifts…

Hope your last weeks of summer are going well…

Pears for Your Heirs…

Pear trees, especially the old English varieties that would have been the subject of this proverb, take many years to mature and give fruit. You don’t plant them for yourself but for your heirs.

The full version of the phrase, which is a 17th century English proverb, is:

Walnuts and pears you plant for your heirs.

The sense of the altruistic nature of tree planting was also expressed by Thomas Fuller in his work Gnomologia, 1732:

“He that plants trees loves others beside himself.”

ht: The Phrase Finder

We’re thankful to whoever planted the trees in our yard. We have a few very mature trees compared to the rest of the neighborhood because our home was the original home surrounded by acres of land that were sold to a developer who put in houses. An old resident down the hill from us told me that our property was originally a nursery called Primrose Acres.

Look at all those pears we picked off our one tree. I know a small portion of them will be used to finish off my Smirntopf but what to do, what to do with all the rest. I’ll try to give some away. Maybe make some pear sauce. There are lots of lovely tarts and other things I can make but I’ll have to give those baked goods away as I’m restraining myself.

If you live close by and want some let me know.