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Finnish cabbage rolls

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Parlor Resident

Joined: 29 Oct 2016
Posts: 271
Location: Finland

PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 11:44 am    Post subject: Finnish cabbage rolls Reply with quote

1 - 2 large heads of white cabbage

For stuffing:

400 g ground beef
(1 - 2 onions)
oil for frying
salt, pepper
1,5 dl short grain rice
(chopped cooked cabbage)
dark syrup (molasses)
melted butter

For a tight-headed cabbage:
Cut a deep cone-shaped incision into the bottom of the cabbage(s) and remove the core(s). Place the whole cabbage, bottom side down, in a large saucepan, at least half-submerged in simmering water.

Cook the cabbage, turning it occasionally, until its leaves start to soften. Gently and carefully, without ripping them, pull off the leaves one at a time as they soften and become loose. Preferably use tongs and be careful not to burn yourself with the boiling water.

Place the boiled leaves to drain in a large colander or on paper towels. The softened leaves should bend easily, without breaking if necessary, cook them for a few minutes longer in boiling water to make them more pliable. Leave the smallest leaves at the very core of the cabbage attached as they are too small to be filled. They can be used to patch up the larger leaves in case these are ripped.

For a loose-headed cabbage:
If the cabbage has a loose head so that the leaves may be easily detached without being torn apart, you can just boil the leaves in batches instead of boiling the whole cabbage and wait for the leaves to soften a few at a time. Drain the boiled, softened leaves in a large colander or on paper towels.

Some people microwave the cabbage leaves, which should be an easier and quicker method to soften them.

To make the stuffing, cook the rice until tender, rinse it with cold water and leave to drain.

Fry the minced meat (with chopped onion) and season it with salt and pepper. Mix rice and meat. Add 2 Tbsp dark syrup.

Stuff the cabbage leaves: place the leaves one at a time on the work surface and trim their thick ribs thinner with a sharp knife, pressing the leaves flat against the work surface as you cut. Be careful not to pierce the leaves, or the stuffing will ooze out.

Baking cabbage rolls:
Place the cabbage rolls snugly in one layer in a wide, generously buttered oven pan, with their seam side down. Mix equal amounts of melted butter and molasses and brush the rolls with half of the mixture. Or you can just drizzle 1 - 2 tablespoons molasses over the rolls and dot the surface with knobs of butter.

Going to the oven:

Bake at 175 - 200 C/347 - 392 F for about 20 minutes. Take the pan out, turn the rolls over (brush with the rest of the butter-molasses mixture) and bake for another 20 minutes, or until the rolls are starting to brown slightly. Then reduce the heat to 150 C/300 C and bake for about 1 hours, or until the rolls are nicely browned and cooked through.

About every 30 minutes, turn the rolls over to prevent them from burning and drying out. Cover the pan with foil towards the end of cooking if the rolls seem to brown too much.

Coming from the oven:

Serve with mashed potatoes or boiled potatoes and sugared lingonberries or lingonberry jam.

(Source: family recipe)
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