A traditional food for Simchat Torah, stuffed cabbage provides a hearty and sustaining meal full of nutrients such as vitamin C, cancer-fighting phytochemicals, potassium, and fiber.
This dish is a tradition handed down from generation to generation, some saying it is eaten now because the shape resembles a Torah scroll while others argue that the dish developed out of practicality as cabbage was readily available in Europe this time of year. Either way it is a holiday favorite that adds servings of vegetables and flavor to your menu.
Holiday Stuffed Cabbage
- 1 lb. ground beef, chicken, or mixture
- 1 medium cabbage
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 Tablespoon dried parsley
- ½ cup cooked brown rice
- 2 cans condensed tomato soup
- 1 can tomatoes
- 1½ cups sauerkraut, drained
- 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
- 3 cups water
- 1 clove minced garlic
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Bring a pot of water to a boil.
- Detach outer, loose cabbage leaves and discard. Core and split head in half. Peel three layers, carefully check these under a strong light on both sides. If leaves are clean and rest of cabbage is tightly packed together, wash cabbage well with soap and water.
- Place cabbage in boiling water and boil until partly cooked. Separate leaves and trim stems. Reserve about 24 to 32 whole leaves. Cut remaining leaves and line the bottom of large roasting pan.
- Mix together meat, onion, cooked rice, parsley, salt, pepper, garlic, and ½ can of tomato soup.
- Lightly pack a small handful of the meat mixture and place in the center of a cabbage leaf. Fold the top part of one leaf over mixture, then fold in the sides and roll until encased. Repeat with remaining leaves and meat mixture.
- Lay rolls on top of torn cabbage leaves in pan. Place sauerkraut and sprinkle sugar on top. Mix canned tomatoes and remaining tomato soup with water and pour over rolls. Add additional water if needed to reach top of cabbage rolls.
- Bake at 350°F for 1½ hours or until cooked through.
The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.