Stuffed Cabbage Leaves

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Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Serves

    4

Appears in

The Real Greek

The Real Greek

By Tonia Buxton

Published 2016

  • About

As a child, Kasia remembers her grandmother making this dish to serve the family for lunch every Sunday. Since then, the recipe has been passed on to Kasia by her own mother.

Ingredients

  • 1 large head of green cabbage

For the filling

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 300 g lean minced lamb
  • 2 tsp. dried oregano
  • ½ tsp. paprika
  • 100 g feta cheese, crumbled, plus extra to garnish
  • 125 g dried couscous
  • 4 spring onions, finely chopped

For the tomato sauce

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 400 g can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely sliced
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

  • Blanch the cabbage, stalk end up in a large pan of boiling water for 5-8 minutes. Drain and leave it to cool.
  • Working with the cabbage stalk end up, use a sharp knife to remove the outer leaves from the main stalk, peeling them off one by one until you have 8 nice-sized leaves. (Chill the blanched centre to use another time)
  • Heat the olive oil in a small pan and cook the minced lamb until browned and crumbly. Add 1 tsp. oregano and half the paprika and stir-fry for a minute or two. Remove from the heat, cool a little then stir in the feta.
  • Make up the couscous according to the pack instructions. Whilst warm, stir in the remaining oregano and chopped spring onion.
  • Mix the couscous with the minced lamb. Season to taste with plenty of black pepper and a little salt.
  • Make a V-shaped cut to remove the thickest part of the stalk from base of each cabbage leaf.
  • Place 2 heaped tbsps. of the meat mixture in the centre of each leaf, fold in the sides and roll the leaf up tightly.
  • Pack the rolled leaves close together in a shallow wide saucepan. Pour boiling water around the side of the pan to come halfway up the cabbage rolls. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Make the tomato sauce; simply simmer all the ingredients in a small lidded pan for 15 minutes, adding a drop of water if required.
  • Drain and serve the cabbage rolls with a little tomato sauce and extra crumbled feta.