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Deconstructed Stuffed Cabbage

  • Prep Time: 40 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 10-12 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked short-grain brown rice (or any rice of your choice)
  • 1 ½ pounds green cabbage, cleaned, cored and cut into chunks
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 ounces raw bacon diced
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 large cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tablespoons tart red wine such as merlot
  • 1 pound lean ground beef (90/10)
  • ½ pound ground pork
  • ½ pound ground veal (if you can’t get ground veal, increase ground pork to one pound)
  • 2 cups tomato juice (or for a more intense flavor, our daughter Courtney suggests using V-8)
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dry thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup drained sauerkraut

Instructions

  1. Cook rice according to package directions. Try to time rice so that it finishes cooking as the preparation of the dish nears the end. If rice is cooked to soon, fluff and leave at room temperature to cool.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and blanch cabbage chunks for five minutes. Drain, cool and set aside.
  3. In a large sauté pan over medium heat, place olive oil and bacon and cook until bacon is almost browned, about 4 minutes. Increase heat to medium high and add onions and sauté for three minutes. Add garlic and sauté for one more minute. Add red wine and deglaze the pan.
  4. Move the cooked onion mixture to the edges of the pan and place all three meats into the center. Keep moving the meat around to brown and slowly work in onion mixture until the meat is fully browned.
  5. Add tomato juice, tomato paste, vinegar, sugar, thyme, paprika, salt and pepper. Reduce to medium and simmer for five minutes.
  6. Add in sauerkraut, cooked rice and cooked cabbage. Bring back up to heat and simmer for five more minutes.
  7. Adjust seasoning and serve.