Romanian Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

  • Difficulty: Difficult
  • 3 hours
  • 5 servings

We sure can tell you this: Romanians do know their food! And now you can try one of the best things their cuisine has to offer. These stuffed cabbage rolls are made of beef, pork, and rice and they’re cooked in a clay pot to preserve their delicious flavor. You can flavor them with some nice, smoked pancetta.

Ingredients Needed for Romanian Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

¼ cup white wine vinegar
salt
lemon salt
1 medium-sized cabbage
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons of rice
½ cup canned tomatoes
8 ounces of ground beef
8 ounces of pork mince
1 egg
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon paprika
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
salt
7 ounces of pancetta
bay leaves
dried dill
1 cup tomato paste

For the polenta:

1 cup cornmeal
4 cups of water

How to Cook Romanian Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

  1. Fill a saucepan halfway with water and bring it to a boil. Add the white wine vinegar, salt, and lemon salt.
  2. Bring the water to a boil and add the cabbage. Cover with a lid and simmer it for the next 5 minutes. Take out the cabbage when ready.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook it until translucent.
  4. Add the rice, canned tomatoes, and cook for 3-4 more minutes.
  5. Add the minced meat in a large bowl.
  6. Add the egg, and season with thyme, pepper, allspice, paprika, and tomato paste. Add the cooked onion and season with salt. Mix with a spatula until smooth.
  7. Peel the cabbage leaves one by one and lay them on a wooden board.
  8. Fill them with around 1 tablespoon of mixture. Wrap them on the sides, carefully securing the filling.
  9. After you finish the meat mixture, chop the remaining cabbage leaves and thinly slice the pancetta.
  10. Lay the cabbage rolls in a large clay pot. Add pancetta, dried dill, and dried thyme in between the cabbage rolls.
  11. Cover with boiled water and tomato paste. Cover the clay pot.
  12. Cook the cabbage rolls for the next 2 hours at 380 degrees F/190 degrees C.
  13. For the polenta:Add the water in a saucepan and heat it over medium heat.
  14. Bring it to boil and slowly add the cornmeal.
  15. Vigorously whisk until the mixture thickens for around 5 minutes.
  16. Serve the cabbage rolls with the polenta and with some topped sour cream.

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