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Polish Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Gołąbki)

One of the most popular dishes in Poland, stuffed cabbage rolls called "gołąbki", are made with pork mince and rice wrapped in cabbage and served in a flavourful tomato sauce.

preparation: 40 minutes

making: 45 minutes

total: 1 hour(s) 25 minutes

servings: 5, 2 per portion

nutrition: 531 calories per serving

cuisine: Polish

Ingredients

  • 700g pork mince
  • 1 cabbage
  • 100g basmati rice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp dried garlic
  • a handful of fresh dill

I used flathead cabbage.

Tomato Sauce

  • 500 ml of passata
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 500 ml of boiling water
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • salt, for taste
  • black pepper, for taste

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Method

All the ingredients on tabletop readyto make Polish Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (Gołąbki)

Cook rice following the instructions on the package, drain and allow it to cool down completely before using it.

Cabbage with cut out core

Using a sharp small knife cut out and discard the core of the cabbage.

This will make it easier for the leaves to come out.

Place the cabbage in a large enough pan to cover it fully. Pour boiling water into the pan to cover the cabbage. Add a pinch of salt, cover with a lid, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for approximately 15 minutes, or until the cabbage becomes tender and pliable.

If your cabbage is too big to fit comfortably in the pan, turn it occasionally with tongs or a spatula to ensure even cooking.

Mixing ingredients in a bowl

Combine the minced meat, rice, and spices (salt, pepper, and garlic) in a large bowl. Mix all ingredients until thoroughly combined.

Once the cabbage is cooked, remove it from the pot and drain it well. You can either let it cool naturally or run it under cold water to speed up the process.

Once drained, pick a leaf and lay it flat on a chopping board.

Using a sharp knife, carefully cut off the central vein of the leaf, if desired.

This step is optional, but it can make the leaves easier to roll and less tough.

Cabbage on a chopping board with portion of a meat before wrapping

Place a portion of the meat and rice mixture in the centre of the leaf.

Fold the sides of the leaf inwards towards the filling.

Wrapping cabbage around meat to make Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Roll the leaf upwards tightly from the bottom to form a compact roll.

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls on chopping board before cooking

Repeat this process until all the meat mixture is used up.

I was able to make 10 gołąbki, but the yield will vary depending on the size of the cabbage leaves and your desired portion size.

Prepare a large pan (ideally the same one you used to cook the cabbage). If you have any leftover cabbage leaves, line the bottom of the dish with them to prevent sticking. Carefully arrange your gołąbki in layers.

Chop some fresh dill and add to the pan (optional).

Mix hot water with a vegetable stock cube in a saucepan or pot. Stir until the cube dissolves completely.

Add passata, a pinch of salt, pepper, and sugar to the pot.

Stir all the ingredients together until well combined.

Try and adjust the amount of salt, pepper, and sugar to your taste.

Sauce on a side and Stuffed Cabbage Rolls in a pan

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls covered with toamto sauce in a pan

Pour the sauce over the cabbage rolls, ensuring they are evenly coated. Cover the pan tightly with a lid.

Cooking Stuffed Cabbage Rolls in a pan

Bring the sauce to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, immediately reduce heat to low and simmer for about 45 minutes.

A portion of Stuffed Cabbage Rolls in a plate

Place 2 gołąbki on a serving plate or shallow bowl.

Spoon some sauce from the pan over the gołąbki, allowing it to pool around them.

Finish with a flourish of fresh dill before serving.

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