A Recipe for Polish Stuffed Cabbage Stew
There are scads of variations for Stuffed Cabbage, but none like this one, which is certain to delight the palate of discriminating cabbage connoisseurs.
When we travel, we immerse ourselves in the customs and cuisines of the countries we visit. The following family recipe was given to us in Warsaw, Poland. We have enjoyed it frequently.
- one large head cabbage
- one pound lean chopped beef
- one large onion
- two medium russet potatoes
- two carrots (optional)
- three slices white bread
- one can Campbell’s tomato soup
- two large eggs
- salt and pepper
Steam cabbage head until leaves are pliable – let cool.
In a large mixing bowl, combine two lightly beaten eggs with 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon granulated salt.
Add one large diced onion to mixture.
Place three slices of plain white bread in hand and soak (quickly) under water faucet. Squeeze out water until bread “mashes” – add to mixture.
Add one pound lean chopped beef and mix with hands until well blended.
Note: Look at hands. If they are covered in white grease, meal will be tasty, but not as healthy as if you had used meat with a lower fat content. We prefer ground London broil which will leave very little residue on your hands – or for that matter – your arteries.
Remove core from cabbage and discard.
Carefully unwrap leaves of cabbage one at a time and set aside.
Hand shape ample amounts of meat mixture and wrap each in cabbage leaves. Start with small leaves first, finish with one large “holding” leaf. You want plenty of cabbage for each “roll.”
Place each “stuffed cabbage” roll gently into a large Dutch oven or large capacity slow cooker.
Combine one can Campbell’s condensed tomato soup with one can water and pour over cabbage rolls. In Poland, a homemade tomato soup is used, but we have found the Campbell’s substitute works very nicely.
Cut two peeled russet potatoes into large chunks – add to pot.
Optional – two carrots, sprinkled diced onion, and additional salt and pepper to taste.
Bring liquid to a boil, and immediately reduce heat.
Cover and simmer for 3 hours.
Serve in large soup bowls with your favorite stew bread, – red wine. Enjoy.