Sunday, October 12, 2008

In Search of the Perfect Cabbage Roll

I am in search of the perfect cabbage roll. I may have found it yesterday.

As background, let me say I have made cabbage rolls before, but they lack that certain "ethnic" taste. I can't describe what that taste is, but I know it when I taste it.

Yesterday hubby and I went to the North Union Market at Shaker Square. Along with selling produce and bakery products, they sell ready-to-eat food. One guy was selling cabbage rolls. And they looked like what I was seeking. I bought them and had them for lunch - and they were IT. The wonderful blend of tastes was there, and they cut like butter and melted in my mouth. I just need to figure out what he used.

I googled "ethnic cabbage rolls" yesterday and you would not believe how many nationalities came up. I don't like sauerkraut, so I had to rule those out, but I read about Polish, Croatian...and many more. I printed one recipe for Ukranian cabbage rolls that looked good and realized that this recipe had no meat inside - only a rice and onion mixture. But then one guy wrote in his comment that he made the recipe and added ground pork, and they were delicious.

Later in the day, I went to get my hair cut and I told my stylist about my search for the perfect cabbage roll. She told me she used her mother's recipe and her mother steamed them in a pot instead of baking them. That sounded interesting.

Then I came home and read the Cleveland Jewish News, and it was a serendipity type of moment - there was a recipe for cabbage rolls in that issue. These were also steamed in a pot, and in this recipe, you cut up the extra cabbage and line the pot with it.

So I'm about to go to the grocery store and try this recipe. Next I will try the Ukranian recipe.

I would appreciate input from anyone who has mastered the art of making cabbage rolls.

P.S. I made the Jewish News recipe. I learned that you can cook the rolls by steaming them. But I added too much water. AND I learned that hubby does not like cabbage rolls. This will make it very hard for my quest to find the perfect cabbage roll since I'll be the only one eating them....

1 comment:

Jeanie said...

Alas -- that won't be me. I have this cabbage thing... you don't want to know.