At this time of year, I’m cleaning out my freezers for the summer months. I am always looking for recipes to use up frozen tomatoes, ground meats, organs and bones. Traditional Sour Cabbage Rolls are a great food for cold winter days or even rainy summer weather like today. This recipe does not use brown rice so is safe for people on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. If you would like, add 1/2c of raw brown rice to the recipe. Note the optional organ meats. Try adding the organs meats to casserole type meals and see if anyone notices the change. Joette Calabrese in Secret Spoonfuls: Confessions of a Sneaky Mom, recommends adding organ meats to increase the nutrient content of a meal.
1 head of sour cabbage
2lbs. ground pastured beef
1lb. ground pastured pork
1/2lb. ground organ meats (optional)
2c finely chopped onions
3-4 minced cloves of garlic
1tsp sea salt
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
3-4 frozen garden tomatoes, skins removed
2-3c bone broth
You can make your own sour cabbage, if you have time, or buy it from a store. Carefully peel the cabbage leaves off the head. You will need to cut through the heavy vein at the base of the stem to get the leaves off. After removing the leaves, cut the leaf in half and remove the large central vein in the middle with a knife. This vein gets in the way of forming the cabbage roll. Use about 2-3 tablespoons of the raw meat filling and form into a oval shape. Place the filling on the half leaf and start rolling from the vein end towards the edge of the leaf. Tuck in each end to close the roll. Do not over stuff the cabbage roll. The rolls should be placed one at a time into a large Dutch Oven with the seam side down. (If you have an enamel Dutch Oven this is the time to use it, due to the acids in the tomatoes and sour cabbage.) Make two or three layers of rolls for the best results. Top each layer with one or two hand crushed tomatoes. Pour as much bone broth as needed to completely cover the cabbage rolls. Bake uncovered at 300F for two hours. The cabbage rolls taste even better the next day after the flavors meld together.