MOM’S FAMOUS HUNGARIAN STUFFED CABBAGE



This is the most popular recipe in this book.  Everyone seems to love it.
This recipe speaks for itself.

1 large head of cabbage
1 large onion
2 cloves of garlic
Two and a half pounds of raw ground round (or a mix of ground beef and ground pork)
Salt and black pepper
Onion powder and garlic powder
One and a half cups of long grained uncooked rice
27 oz. can of sauerkraut
28 oz. can of tomato sauce


Slowly heat one large head of cabbage in pot of water on the stove.  Water only has
to cover half of the cabbage head.  Keep rolling the head over now and then during
the heating process to heat the head evenly.  The idea here is to just soften the
cabbage leaves on the head enough so that the leaves can be peeled off without too
much trouble.  After heating about 10-15 minutes try removing a few of the outer
leaves or as many as are pliable.  Remove them by first making a cut at the base of
the cabbage where the leaf is attached and grows from the cabbage head.  Carefully
peel and remove as many as you can starting with the topmost first leaf of course.
Put the remainder of the head back into the heating pot to soften more of the leaves
on the head.  The leaves should be pliable but not fully cooked when removed.  The
water may not necessarily be boiling during this whole procedure.  Keep playing with
this and repeating this process until almost all of the leaves are removed from the
cabbage head.  Leave about a baseball-sized portion of the head intact (unpeeled).
Set all of the removed leaves carefully aside, they will be stuffed later.  The
leaves should not be fully cooked when removed but pliable enough to be rolled
loosely and come off of the head  without breaking up.  Turn off the heat when
finished.  

Now break up about two and a half pounds of raw ground round into a big bowl.  Chop
up two garlic cloves and one large onion and put this into the bowl too.  Next put
in about one teaspoon of salt, a half-teaspoon of black pepper, a half-teaspoon of
onion powder, and a half-teaspoon of garlic powder.  Mix this all together well in
the bowl using clean hands.  Next put one and a half cups of uncooked long grained
rice in another big bowl.  Put some water in the bowl just to cover the rice then
just strain the water back out of the bowl leaving the wet rice.  DO NOT RINSE OUT
ALL OF THE STARCH FROM THE RICE.  Put this once-rinsed uncooked rice into the bowl
with the meat mixture.  Mix the rice in well using clean hands again.

ROLLING THE CABBAGE:

Put one of your cabbage leaves flat in one hand, stem part near you.  Put approximately
a golfball-and-a-half-sized clump of meat mixture in the middle of the leaf.  Make
the meat clump oblong-like.  Then starting at the bottom (stem) part near you, start
carefully rolling the meat up in the leaf.  If the stem part is too thick to roll,
trim it a little.  Once rolled up satisfactorily, push each ragged loose outer end
into the cabbage ends using one finger.  This takes a little practice but I managed
it the first time I tried it.  Remember, place only enough meat mixture on the leaf
as feasible to roll comfortably.  Each leaf is a different size.  

COOKING:

Now put about an inch of water into a big twelve-quart pot (with lid).  Rinse a 27-oz.
can of sauerkraut in a strainer.  Just give the sauerkraut a real quick rinse so that
you do not rinse all of the brine out of it!  Next add one quarter of a 28 oz. can of
plain tomato “sauce” in with the water in the 12 quart pot.  Then sprinkle in about
one and a half cups of the drained sauerkraut into the pot also.  Now slice up the
remainder of that head of cabbage and place half of it in the pot also.  Now you start
“setting the pot.”  To do this simply place the cabbage rolls around the edge of the
inside of the pot.  Do this so that just one end of each roll touches the side of the
pot (like the spokes in a wheel).  Place a couple rolls in the center too.  Next
sprinkle a little more sauerkraut and a little more of that sliced cabbage over the top
of this layer of rolls (save a little bit for the next step too).  Next place the
remaining rolls on top of all this.  Then sprinkle the last of the sauerkraut and
sliced up cabbage over this layer of rolls.  Now pour the remaining three-quarters can
of tomato sauce over the top of this.  Finally, gently pour just enough water into the
pot just to cover all the stuff in the pot.  Now place the pot on the stove, cover, and
bring to a boil.  Then lower the heat way down and slowly cook for about an hour and a
half.  Keep covered.  When done, turn off heat, serve and enjoy!  VERY popular!