This is a comforting, traditional eastern European dish that tastes every bit as good as my baba’s (grandma’s)! Feel free to switch the pilaf stuffing to any left over grain, squash or potato in the fridge!
- 1 head of green cabbage
- 1, ½ cup pasta sauce (your own or from a jar – look for no added oil or cheese)
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon sweetener (optional)
- 1 ½ cup Rice Lentil Pilaf
For the Rice Lentil Pilaf
- 1 small onion chopped
- 1 cup brown rice
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 ½ cups water or vegetable stock
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ cup raw lentils
- 1 t soy sauce (optional)
- ½ cup raisins
- ½ cup pine nuts or sunflower seeds (optional)
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Rinse cabbage and cut out the core as best you can. Steam cabbage in a vegetable steamer, in a large pot with water up to the steamer. Steam for 15 minutes or until soft to roll a cabbage leaf. Make sure there is enough water to last. Rinse leaves to cool.
Prepare Pilaf: Sauté onion in a wok or skillet, with a splash of orange-carrot juice, broth or other liquid, until soft. Add rice, water, tomato paste, cinnamon and lentils and stir. Bring to boil, cover and simmer on low heat for 30 minutes, Stir in soy sauce, raisins and nuts. Add ¼ C more water if mixture does not have a little water left. Simmer on low for a few more minutes, until soft.
Combine pasta sauce, water and sweetener in a large measuring cup or pitcher and mix. Pour ¼ C sauce mixture plus 1/4 cup or so of water into a 9 x 12” casserole dish. Gently shake the pan to coat the ban bottom evenly with liquid.
Peel off a leaf of cabbage and place 2 to 4 T of pilaf in the center. Bring sides of leaf to the center and roll the top of leaf over pilaf and cabbage edges, and over the bottom of the leaf. Place this stuffed leaf in the casserole pan, edges down. Repeat until you have just little cabbage leaves left. Combine two or three small leaves to make some sort of stuffed package. Pour the remaining sauce over the cabbage rolls. Cover and bake for 30 minutes or until sauce is bubbly.
- Use 4 green peppers, cored and steamed instead of cabbage.
- Sprinkle nutritional yeast on top before baking.
For the Rice Lentil Pilaf:
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Place in baking dish in a bit of orange-carrot juice, broth or other liquid. Cover and bake for 30 minutes.