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Recipe: Stuffed cabbage rolls

Serves 4

Prep:

Cook:

Serves:

    My childhood memories of stuffed cabbage are not happy. Heavy, dull and indigestible, their name, holishkes, made me think I was being forced to eat rubbery galoshes. This vegetarian version has made me reconsider, though I am still tempted to keep the sour cream and hold the rest. Any cabbage will do - savoy looks prettiest, but green or sweetheart arguably tastes better.

    Serves 4

    Ingredients

    ● 8 large cabbage leaves
    ● 3 tbsp rapeseed oil
    ● 1 medium onion, finely chopped
    ● Half a celery stick, finely chopped
    ● 1 tsp dried mixed herbs
    ● 50g uncooked rice
    ● 50g brown mushrooms, chopped into small pieces
    ● 20-25g ready-to-eat dried apricots, roughly chopped
    ● 20-25g walnuts, chopped
    ● 400ml tomato sauce
    ● Sour cream (optional)

    Method

    ● Preheat oven to 180˚C. Remove the tough stalk from the leaves at the point where they were attached to the stem. Don't cut away too much or they will be hard to roll.
    ● Plunge the leaves into boiling salted water for a minute, until they just start to wilt. Drain and refresh under cold running water. Drain well and pat dry.
    ● Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the onion and fry for 5 minutes until it starts to soften. Add the celery, the mushrooms and mixed herbs and gently fry for 5 minutes. Stir in the rice for a minute, so the grains start to gleam, then add the apricots and walnuts. Season to taste.
    ● Spoon a little stuffing onto a cabbage leaf, fold in the sides and roll up to enclose the filling. Place in a single layer in a large, oiled shallow oven-proof dish with the join underneath. Pour over the tomato sauce to just cover the rolls, add water or stock if necessary.
    ● Cover the dish tightly with foil, bake for 1 hour. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes more.
    ● Serve, if wished, with sour cream - and who wouldn't?

    Method
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