Makes about 18-24 Slovenian stuffed cabbages or sarma s kislim zeljem
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours, 45 minutes
- 1 large head cabbage, about 4 pounds
- 1 finely chopped medium onion
- 1 tablespoon bacon fat or butter
- 1 1/2 pounds lean ground pork
- 3/4 pound ground beef chuck
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon (or to taste) pepper
- 2 teaspoons (or to taste) salt
- 1 cup raw rice
- 2 pounds drained sauerkraut (rinsing optional)
- 1 cup tomato juice
- 2 cups water
- 3 pork neck bones
- Remove core from cabbage. Place whole head in a large pot filled with boiling, salted water. Cover and cook 3 minutes, or until softened enough to pull off individual leaves. You will need about 18-24 leaves.
- When leaves are cool enough to handle, use a paring knife to cut away the thick center stem from each leaf, without cutting all the way through.
- Chop the remaining cabbage and place it in the bottom of a large greased casserole dish or Dutch oven. Saute onion in bacon fat until tender and let cool.
- Combine ground pork and beef, cooked onion, egg, pepper, salt and rice, and mix well. Don't overmix or the meat will become tough.
- Place about 1/2 cup of filling on each cabbage leaf. Roll away from you to encase the meat. Flip the right side of the leaf to the middle, then flip the left side. You will have something that looks like an envelope. Once again, roll away from you to create a neat little roll.
- Place cabbage rolls on top of the chopped cabbage in layers in the casserole dish or Dutch oven. Place drained sauerkraut on top followed by tomato juice, water and neck bones on the very top. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to very low, cover and simmer on the stovetop for 3 to 4 hours, making sure the rolls do not burn. Serve with mashed potatoes or noodles, and a good crusty homemade bread.