Saturday, February 14, 2009

Valentine's Day Dinner

Went out for dinner tonight, cheese fondue with all the fixings and for dessert, flaming chocolate fondue! It comes with bits of fruit & cake to dip along with 2 marshmallows to toast while the fondue is still flaming.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Recipes from the Twit Army Mess Hall - Spicy Suffed Cabbage

By substituting shredded cabbage for the traditional rice in stuffed cabbage rolls the carb load on these rolls goes down significantly. If you want to lower it further (at some loss of flavor) replace the last cup of tomato sauce with one cup of low sodium chicken or beef broth.
The recipe comes from the Prudhomme Family Cookbook, an Amazon link to the book is at the end of the recipe.


2.5 tsp of salt
2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper

3 lbs of cabbage (you'll need to have at least 6 to 8 'perfect' leaves for the rolls), shred the rest until you have at least 2 cups of finely shredded cabbage, you can use more if you want & really like cabbage
4 tbls of sweet butter (you can substitute olive oil but the taste will suffer)
2 c. chopped onions
3/4 to 1 lb of ground beef
1 c. beef or chicken stock
2 8 oz cans of tomato sauce (I HATE it that now the larger cans are 15 oz instead of 16 ozs.)
1 c. chopped green peppers
1/2 c. chopped green onions, the green part
1/4 c. chopped celery
2 tbl chopped parsley, fresh
1/2 tsp finely chopped garlic


Mix seasonings & put aside.
Take those 6 - 8 perfect leaves, trim off the tough stems & steam or parboil until tender enough to roll up (will take about 5 - 10 minutes or so). Drain them & put aside.

In a large saucepan, melt 2 tbls & 1 tsp of butter, add the onions & saute until very well browned, this will take about 10 minutes. Remove the onions, add the beef & cook until done. Remove the beef and mix with the onions. Pour the fat (butter & drippings) from the pan & only put back 2 tbls (this is what the extra butter is for, if the beef is very lean you may need to add some extra butter to get up to 2 tbls). Add the cabbage and cook until it wilts. you'll need to keep stirring or the bottom layer will burn before the top wilts. Add everything except for 1 cup of the tomato sauce (you'll add 1 cup at this time) to the cabbage and cook until almost all the liquid evaporates. The mixture shouldn't have much liquid left in the pot but if you let it go completely dry things will start to burn. This will take about 10 to 15 minutes. Take the pot from the heat. You can stop now for about 3 hours if you want to do this prep earlier & make the rolls later.

Now for the fun & messy part, take each cabbage leaf & fill it with about 1/2 c. of the mixture. Fold, roll or somehow cover the filling with the cabbage leaf & place seam side down in a baking pan, the pan has to be tight enough to hold the rolls with no room between them or they will come apart during the final baking,(a 9 x 9 foil pan works well) if you're really worried about having 'perfect' rolls then you can secure them with toothpicks or kitchen twine, just remove them before serving. Pour on the last cup of tomato sauce (here's where you can sub the broth but don't omit some liquid or the rolls will burn). Cover with foil, making sure that foil stays clear of the rolls & bake in a 425 degree oven until extremely tender, about 1.5 hours.


Serves 4 figuring 1.5 rolls per person