Friday, February 27, 2009

It's My Pierogi Birthday Party and I'll Eat If I Want To!



Welcome to the final chapter of Contessa Marysia's Kitchen and her Pierogi Birthday Party Bash. Today, you will receive the recipe for the stuffed cabbage or golombki as it is called in Polish. This is a very delicious dish and truthfully, it's a meal in itself. I think by the end of the night we all must have gained 10 pounds. Of course, most of those beautiful women will be at the gym the next day, me, oh let's not even go there. I still think of the gym classes of 1967, where we wore those disgusting maroon outfits with those bloomer thingies under them...

The Contessa Maria AKA Pani Marusia and Princess Pani Ewa really worked quite hard to get the cabbage ready...it was a job!!! We prepped the night before from 4:00 pm (and Maria had already started when I got there) until well after 11:30 pm, and Maria was still working when we left.

The cabbage was worth the wait, the sauce was delicious, and I learned something new, the sauce has heavy cream in it, yet, it had a vibrant red color, not a typical vodka sauce kind of pink at all!!!

Here is the recipe for the long awaited stuffed cabbage or golombki. Maria and I cut the recipe in half. That night we did 9 pounds of meat!

Stuffed Cabbage Rolls – “Golombki”
Maria aka Pani Marysia

2 heads cabbage
4 cups uncooked long grained Rice
5 pounds of ground beef and pork (combined) in equal amounts (2½ pounds of each)
4-6 medium onions, peeled and diced
½ cups olive or vegetable oil
1 stick Butter
1 pound Bacon cut in 1-inch pieces
3 tablespoons black pepper
1-tablespoon dill plus extra to sprinkle on cabbage
Sea salt – sprinkle
3 tablespoons Parsley
1-tablespoon thyme
1-tablespoon marjoram

Sea salt and black pepper to taste to sprinkle over cabbage Dill and Caraway seeds to sprinkle over cabbage

If you made your tomato sauce in advance, make sure you remove it from the refrigerator and heat it so that when you are ready to serve the cabbage the sauce will be hot. Keep it on a low heat while you are baking the stuffed cabbage rolls.

Remove the core from the cabbages, by inserting a sharp knife into the base of the cabbage. Continue in a circular motion until the entire core is removed but leave the cabbages whole. Place the 2 heads of cabbage into a steamer (you may need to use more than one steamer if you are doing a larger volume, or do two at a time. Steam the cabbage for about 30 minutes until the leaves become pliable and translucent. Drain the cabbage. Reserve all of the water from the steaming and set aside to pour over the stuffed cabbage later on. Let the cabbage cool off before you begin to separate the leaves and stuff them.

Place the rice on a flat plate and carefully go through the rice and remove any stones, or other debris. Rinse the rice off. Place the rice in a large bowl and cover it with water Let the rice sit in the water until ready to use, then drain slightly.

Peel the onions. Cut the onion in thin slices, turn 90 degrees and slice again, and then dice the onions. Set onions aside. Cut the bacon in 1-inch pieces.

While the cabbage is steaming make the chopped meat and rice mixture.

Place the oil in a frying pan, add the butter. Melt the butter and the oil together; add the bacon. Cover for a few minutes to help crisp the bacon. Stir the mix. Add the pepper, and the dill, mix together. Add the onions, and cook until well caramelize and the bacon is crisp. Add the sea salt, marjoram, thyme, and the parsley; mix well. Cook for a few more minutes. Let cool a little before adding to the meat so you don’t burn your hands.

In a large bowl, mix the chopped meats with the uncooked rice and mix well. Add the onion mixture to the meat, and mix well with your hands or a spoon. If you are in to raw meat, taste and re-season if necessary. You can form the meat into ovals to stuff into the leaves, or you can just place it and roll as you go. Remove some of the outside leaves from the heads of cabbage and place a layer of leaves in the bottom of a pot, if you are going to cook your cabbage on the top of the stove, or in the bottom of a baking pan if you are going to cook them in the oven. Leave some leaves on the side to cover the top of the pot/baking pan later on if desired.

When the cabbage is cool, separate each leaf from the head. Remove a little bit of the thickened stalk at the end. Take one of the separated leaves and place it flat on the table or work space. To fold the rolls, take that large leaf, place about 3 tablespoons of the filling in the leaf. Roll it up a little, then turn one side in, and then the other side in and continue rolling and tuck in the outer edge to make a flap.

You have two options to cook the stuffed cabbage.
You can either do them on top of the stove, or, you can bake them in the oven

To do in the oven:

Preheat the oven to 375º F. Make sure the tomato sauce is on a low simmer so it will be hot when you serve it. Place some of the reserved cabbage on the bottom of a baking pan. Place the stuffed cabbage in a single layer, if the pan is deep enough you can do two layers. Cover the stuffed cabbage with the water that you saved from the steaming of the cabbage earlier. Sprinkle the cabbage rolls generously with dill, sea salt and pepper and caraway seeds. Cover with the baking dish with aluminum foil. Bake 375º F. for about 1½ - 2 hours until bubbling and thoroughly cooked. Add the tomato sauce mixture(don't forget the heavy cream) and lower the heat to 200º to keep warm until serving (keep the foil on it to keep moist).
You can serve remaining tomato sauce in a gravy boat.

To do on top of the stove:

Place some of the reserved cabbage on the bottom of a large, deep pot. Place the rolls in the pot (you can make several layers). Pour enough water from the pot you steamed the cabbage in to cover the rolls completely. Sprinkle the cabbage rolls generously with dill, sea salt and pepper, and caraway seeds. Cover the pot with a lid. Bring to a boil and them lower the heat and let simmer for about 2- 2½ hours on the top of the stove. Add the sauce (don't forget to add the cream) to the pot or as you serve the stuffed cabbage rolls.
You can serve remaining tomato sauce in a gravy boat.

NOTE: Because the stuffed cabbage contains uncooked rice, you must use a lot of water so it can absorbed by the rice and cook thoroughly.


Please note that Maria had already made the sauce so you will just have to follow the directions.

If you have extra sauce, set some aside, and you can freeze it for another use (do this before adding the heavy cream.)

Tomato Sauce for the Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

Maria AKA“Pani Marysia”

4 (32 ounce cans) Tomato Puree
Olive Oil (about ¼ cup)
2 onions (peeled and chopped)
Garlic 5-6 cloves (peeled and chopped)
3 tablespoons Italian Seasonings
Sugar (1 tablespoon)
½ pint – 1 pint Heavy Cream to taste

Place about ¼ cup olive oil in a large pot. Sauté the onions until just starting to caramelize. Add the garlic and sauté for about 10 seconds. Add the tomato puree and rinse the cans with a little water to get all the remaining tomato out. Add the water to the sauce. Add the Italian Seasonings and the sugar. Bring to a boil, watch carefully so it doesn’t stick and burn. Then, lower to a simmer for about 30 minutes. Add the cream to the sauce just before putting it on the cabbage.

When the stuffed cabbages are cooked through, add the sauce to the baking pan or pot that the cabbage is in and them continue to keep warm.


This is what you will need for the recipe: (not the kielbasa)




Stuffed Cabbage Rolls – “Golombki”
Maria AKA“Pani Marysia”

2 heads cabbage
4 cups uncooked long grained Rice
5 pounds of ground beef and pork (combined) in equal amounts (2½ pounds of each)
4-6 medium onions, peeled and diced
½ cups olive or vegetable oil
1 stick Butter
1 pound Bacon cut in 1-inch pieces
3 tablespoons black pepper
1-tablespoon dill plus extra to sprinkle on cabbage
Sea salt – sprinkle
3 tablespoons Parsley
1-tablespoon thyme
1-tablespoon marjoram

Sea salt and black pepper to taste to sprinkle over cabbage
Dill and Caraway seeds to sprinkle over cabbage

Contessa Marysai getting ready to make the stuffed cabbage rolls


If you made your tomato sauce in advance, make sure you remove it from the refrigerator and heat it so that when you are ready to serve the cabbage the sauce will be hot. Keep it on a low heat while you are baking the stuffed cabbage rolls.

Remove the core from the cabbages,

by inserting a sharp knife into the base of the cabbage

Continue in a circular motion until

the entire core is removed but leave the cabbages whole


Place the 2 heads of cabbage into a steamer
(you may need to use more than one steamer
if you are doing a larger volume, or do two at a time)




Don't forget we made a double recipe here
Maria used pot bottoms as lids to create her
own large steamers


Steam the cabbage for about 30 minutes until the leaves
become pliable and translucent
Note the change in color, it's now light green


Drain the cabbage


Reserve all of the water from the steaming and
set aside to pour over the stuffed cabbage later on


Let the cabbage cool off before you begin
to separate the leaves and stuff them


Place the rice on a flat plate and carefully go through the rice

and remove any stones, or other debris.

Rinse the rice off


Place the rice in a large bowl and cover it with water


Let the rice sit in the water until ready to use, then drain slightly




Peel the onions


Cut the onion in thin slices

turn 90 degrees and slice again

and then chop the onions


Set onions aside


Cut the bacon in 1-inch pieces


While the cabbage is steaming make
the chopped meat and rice mixture

Place the oil in a frying pan


Add the butter


Melt the butter and the oil together, add the bacon

Cover for a few minutes to help crisp the bacon


Stir the mix

add the pepper


the dill

mix together


add the onions and cook until well caramelized
and the bacon is crisp



Add the sea salt


the marjoram

the thyme and the parsley


and mix well,

cook for a few more minutes


Let cool a little before adding to the meat
so you don’t burn your hands


In a large bowl, mix the chopped meats

with the uncooked rice

and mix well


Add the onion mixture


to the meat

and mix well with your hands or a spoon





Look at Pani Marysia and Pani Ewa go...

You think they've done this a few times


If you are in to raw meat, taste and re-season if necessary...

They added a little more salt



You can form the meat into ovals to stuff into the leaves
or you can just place it and roll as you go


Remove some of the outside leaves from the heads of cabbage

and place a layer of leaves in the bottom of a pot
if you are going to cook your cabbage on the
top of the stove, or in the bottom of a baking pan
if you are going to cook them in the oven
Leave some leaves on the side to cover the
top of the pot/baking pan later on if desired


When the cabbage is cool, separate each leaf from the head

Remove a little bit of the thickened stalk at the end




Pani Ewa actually used these and made
a base for a soup with them


Take one of the separated leaves and place it
flat on the table or work space

To fold the rolls, take that large leaf


Place about 3 tablespoons of the filling in the leaf.


Roll it up a little,


then turn one side in

and then the other side in


and continue rolling and

tuck in the outer edge to make a flap



You have two options to cook the stuffed cabbage
You can either do them on top of the stove,
or you can bake them in the oven


To do in the oven:

Preheat the oven to 375º F.

Make sure the tomato sauce is on a low
simmer so it will be hot when you serve it


Place some of the reserved cabbage
on the bottom of a baking pan

Place the stuffed cabbage in a single layer,

if the pan is deep enough you can do two layers


Cover the stuffed cabbage with the water that
you saved from the steaming of the cabbage earlier
Sprinkle the cabbage rolls generously with dill,
sea salt and pepper and caraway seeds


Cover with the baking dish with aluminum foil

Bake 375º F. for about 1½ - 2 hours until bubbling
and thoroughly cooked



Add the tomato sauce mixture
(don't forget the heavy cream)


and lower the heat to 200º to keep warm until serving
(keep the foil on it to keep moist).
You can serve remaining tomato sauce in a gravy boat.


To do on top of the stove:

Place some of the reserved cabbage on
the bottom of a large, deep pot



Place the rolls in the pot



(you can make several layers)


Pour enough water from the pot you steamed
the cabbage in to cover the rolls completely


Sprinkle the cabbage rolls generously with dill,

sea salt and pepper

and caraway seeds

Cover the pot with a lid


Bring to a boil and them lower the heat
and let simmer for about 2- 2½ hours
on the top of the stove

Add the sauce (don't forget to add the cream) to the pot
or as you serve the stuffed cabbage rolls
(see how all the water was absorbed)


The Contessa plating the stuffed cabbage



You can serve remaining tomato sauce in a gravy boat.


NOTE: Because the stuffed cabbage contains uncooked rice, you must use a lot of water so it can absorbed by the rice and cook thoroughly.

The Royal Court Enjoying The Golombki Dinner


Notice all those fancy aprons :)


Pass those Pierogies


Contessa, the Birthday Girl,
explaining once again, the reason behind the vodka shots


Here's to a long and healthy life

Notice the empty plates, the meal was a success!

Time for the gifts






The Cake...
Happy Birthday Dear Contessa, Happy Birthday to You!!!


Official Birthday Photos


That's me, the big hips in the middle...
too many pierogies



A special thank you to Maria and Ewa for
taking the time to teach me the art of the pierogi
and to all the wonderful women who participated
and allowed me to put their photos on the blog...

Go out and celebrate, nothing, anything, the joy of being alive!!!!!


Cabbage Rolls on Foodista

1 comment:

  1. Kudos to you - for all the effort and time for this great series.

    Anne

    ReplyDelete