This is one of my all time favorites! I really can’t think of one person in the family that didn’t love my moms stuffed cabbage. I always ate mine the way my father ate his, cut in half, smashed with a fork and then drowned in tomato broth. They take a little bit of work, but they are worth it.
1 Jumbo Cabbage, core removed, (do not cut cabbage in half-leave whole)
4 lbs ground beef
1 TBSP Salt
1/2 TBSP black pepper
1/2 medium onion finely chopped
1/2 TBSP granulated garlic
1/2 C. grated parmesan cheese
1 handful of fresh parsley chopped
1/2 tsp Oregano
2 cups of Instant cooked rice ( I like to use Annie Chuns sprouted brown rice that is fully cooked, just needs to be heated in the microwave)
60-80 ounces of tomato juice, warmed
(I like to use Pomi strained tomatoes, as they are GMO and BPA free)
1/2 stick butter, melted
1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper
mix together and set aside
Steaming the Cabbage
Bring a large pot half-full of water to a boil. Place the cored Cabbage in the water. As the outer leaves begin to steam they will pull away from the cabbage, remove them as they do and place on a plate. Continue to cook and remove layer by layer, cutting away when necessary from the whole head. If there are any very thick stalky parts of the cabbage, thin them out by cutting with a knife the thickest parts so they will not be tough when eating. When you have removed the best leaves of the cabbage and feel there are no more big enough to stuff, turn off the water and reserve the small head for another meal.
Prepare a large enough work surface to roll up the cabbage with the beef mixture. Lay the piece of cabbage on the work surface, fill with a generous amount of filling, roll and tuck the sides in as you roll up the cabbage. Place in a large covered pot so they cannot open up open side down. Layer until all the cabbage and beef is used up.
Pour the tomato juice mixture into the pot and completely submerge all of the cabbage rolls. Cover and bring to a bubbling simmer between low and medium heat. Leave covered for approximately 1 hour. Be sure that the temperature is not too hot so they do not stick and burn on bottom. Stir in a circle (like spinning the cabbages clockwise around the inside of the pot) occasionally to keep them from sticking to bottom.
Any tomato juice leftover can be added as the cabbage cooks and the juices begin to evaporate, add as needed. After and hour of cooking, check a cabbage roll for doneness, if the cabbage is really tender and the center is done, turn them off. If they need a little longer, cook as necessary. Plan on a two hour window of cooking time. They will stay piping hot in the pan for a long time, at least an hour, after they are cooked.