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Chickens and Unschooling
Learning through living
Dolma 
28th-Jan-2019 09:03 pm
rooster
Growing up I used to only like the insides of the cabbage rolls my Mother would make. I'd always give my Dad my cabbage. Now I love the cabbage and generally eat more of it than the rice and beef whenever I make Dolma. Funny how that works.

Here's a loose recipe for anyone who might be interested.

About 1/2 cup dried rice to 1lb ground beef. I add pepper, garlic salt, garlic powder, and onion powder (my grandmother used chopped onion) to the uncooked rice before thoroughly mixing it with the raw ground beef. Sometimes I add an egg.

To get the cabbage ready, cut out the thick bottom part and simmer, in a couple of inches of water, in a lidded pot. This is done to soften the leaves to make them able to wrap around the meat/rice. I keep the cabbage simmering as I pull out one leaf at a time. The leaves look brighter green when ready, but will fall apart if cooked too long.

I form elongated mounds with the raw meat/uncooked rice. Usually about twice as long as thick, but they vary in size so I can get them to fit nicely in each cabbage leaf. Place each mound into the center of a cabbage leaf, fold, fold, roll (kind of like a burrito with both ends folded in). Place in pot.

Loosly fill in the bottom of the pot making sure the cabbage rolls are not too tightly packed. Do a second layer if needed. I chop up the extra cabbage and layer it on top. Take the excess water from simmering the cabbage and pour it in. Add more water to just barely cover the rolls. Add garlic salt and pepper. Pour an 8 oz. tomato sauce on top.

All my seasonings are to taste, so I don't have exact measurements. When I make a larger batch (3lbs meat) I will add two cans of tomato sauce.

Lid pot, heat over medium heat until bubbling, then reduce heat and simmer. Cook for an hour or two. To check readiness, cut a dolma in half and see if the rice is cooked enough. The meat always cooks faster than the rice. I find the 85% lean ground beef is a good balance to achieve not too fatty and not too dry.
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