Thursday, May 28, 2009

Ronny's Cabbage Rolls

I'm sure everyone has their version of cabbage rolls, it's such a universally popular dish. My mom had her own version which came with some kind of a tomato sauce and I loved it as a kid. Anyway I thought I'd share Ronny's version with you which uses agave syrup, soy sauce and long grain rice - which is a somewhat 'leaner' version of this age old dish. The combination of agave syrup, soy sauce and butter in his sauce (did I ever mention that Ronny puts soy sauce in a lot of things?) were a perfect match for the cabbage rolls and although I didn't have much of an appetite when dinner started, I think I ate six of them! He served his cabbage rolls with what he calls 'garlic mash', which is mashed potatoes spiked with crushed garlic.

Ronny's Cabbage Rolls

Ingredients for the Cabbage Rolls

Serves 4

1 Cabbage

3 dl Long Grain Rice

4oog Ground Beef

1.5 dl Whole Milk

1 Egg


Black Pepper

4 Tbsp Agave Syrup

50 g Butter

Ingredients for the 'Garlic Mash'

4 Big Potatoes

Whole Milk (enough to give the mashed potatoes a soft consistency)

8 Tbsp Cream

1 Medium Garlic Clove


Black Pepper

Ingredients for the Sauce

Juices from the Cooked Cabbage Rolls (as much as you can get)

Whole Milk


Soy Sauce

Step 1: Boil water in a big pot (big enough so that an entire head of cabbage can fit in it). Put salt in it when it comes to a boil.

Step 2: Core the cabbage and immerse in the boiling water, with the gaping hole facing-up for a few minutes until the leaves start falling off and remove them one by one on another plate with a cloth to dry.

Step 3: Cut off the hard parts of the cabbage (to make wrapping easier).

Step 4: Preheat the oven to 200 C.

Step 5: Mix cooked long grain rice with the ground beef, milk, the egg and some salt and black pepper.

Step 6: Wrap this mixture with the cabbage leaves and put them inside 2 buttered casserole pans.

Step 7: Drizzle agave syrup evenly over the cabbage rolls and put bits of butter on top of them. Bake for 30-35 minutes.

Step 8: While the cabbage rolls are cooking in the oven, make your mashed potatoes the way you usually make them, and then mix in one crushed garlic clove, milk, cream, butter, salt and pepper.

Step 9: When the cabbage rolls are ready, use the juices in the casserole dishes to make a sauce.

Step 10: In a sauce pan, simmer the juices with a bit of cream, milk and a dash of soy sauce.

After I wrote that this was a 'leaner' version of cabbage rolls some of you might be thinking: cream and butter?! Well, what did you think? It's cabbage rolls - so there's a limit to how 'lean' it can really be, right? Let's just say Ronny's version uses cream and butter in a restrained way and lets the combination of the sweetness of the agave syrup, soy sauce and butter dominate.


Trish said...

Agave? Never used it or seen it...where would I find it...what part of the produce aisle would that be? Sounds really good...I am liking the twist on the cabbage rolls.

Justin said...

funny you say everyone has a favorite dish for this, because I've NEVER tried it... looks good though

Murasaki Shikibu said...

Trish: You can find agave syrup in health food stores. To be truthful the only reason why I have some is because you can't buy corn syrup here and I read somewhere that this can be used as a substitute. Some say it's healthier but some evidence suggests it's not - so the only reason why you'd use it is for its flavor which isn't that distinct. ;)

Justin: haha interesting that there are people who have never had cabbage rolls. ;)

Elra said...

Wow, this is truly unique recipe. The combination of agave syrup, soy sauce and butter sounds interesting, I am sure they work well together, considering how much you ate this already.

Murasaki Shikibu said...

Elra: Ronny does put soy sauce in the strangest things. It worked out really nicely in this particular case though. I think in one restaurant he worked, he was the sauce chef - and I have to admit he is good at making sauces in general. :)

Natashya said...

Men and their cabbage rolls! My hubby would love this.

Marta said...

Oh yes! I like this version! It sounds so healthy and light! I like cabbage rolls done like this, not necessarily floating on rich sauces. Perfect use of agave!

Dorte said...

I have never tried to make cabbage rolls but I have eaten it once or twice as a child. I like cabbage a lot, but too many in my family don't :-)

Murasaki Shikibu said...

Natashya: lol...yeah, really. :p

Marta: I think this is the best thing we've ever done with agave syrup. ;)

Dorte: I don't like cabbage very much either, but I'm fine if it's cabbage rolls. Cabbage is apparently good for your stomach so I really should eat more of it though. :)

Gallery Juana - ギャラリー ワナ said...

Hi, I discovered your blog through Dorte's blog.

The garlic mashed potatoes make me hungry. I love garlic.

Lori said...

I grew up on Golabki, the Polish variety with red sauce. I have never heard of corn syrup on them. I bet they tasted amazing.

Murasaki Shikibu said...

Gallery Juana: Thanks for stopping by! :)

Lori: hmmm my mom made her cabbage rolls with a reddish sauce. I loved it as a kid. :)