Mom's Cabbage Rolls | Acne Nutritionist | Katie Stewart

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Mom's cabbage rolls in a glass baking dish.
November 19, 2022

Mom’s Cabbage Rolls

Mom’s Cabbage Rolls

My mom has been making cabbage rolls for as long as I can remember. They’re a staple dish she makes regularly for dinner and brings to our big family potlucks.

I love making a batch on the weekend and having them on hand for a quick and hearty lunch throughout the week. Perfect for when you want a comforting and tummy-warming meal on a cold day.

Now, my favourite part of her recipe is the addition of sauerkraut. It adds a punch of tangy flavour that pairs beautifully with the rich tomato sauce.

All Things Cabbage

Cabbage. Such an underrated vegetable.

A cruciferous vegetable, cabbage belongs to the Brassicaceae family of plants. These unique vegetables are amazing sources of sulphur-containing compounds known as glucosinolates. These compounds are most well-known for their cancer-fighting abilities. Other cruciferous vegetables include:

Aside from their cancer-fighting properties, cruciferous vegetables are also great for helping to reduce inflammation, regulating blood sugar and promoting estrogen balance. All three of these are key components to clearing up acne. We regularly recommend cruciferous vegetables to our clients in The Clear Skin Solution.

What to Do About Arsenic in Rice

Arsenic is a toxic environmental pollutant that is found in both soil and groundwater. It was also previously used in now-banned pesticides. While these arsenic-containing pesticides haven’t been used it years, the remnants are still present in the soil today. Another way we’re exposed to arsenic is through industrial processes. Many industries still use arsenic which ends up contaminating the soil and groundwater used in agriculture farming.

Rice plants easily take up arsenic from the soil and groundwater – more so than any other grain we eat. Unfortunately, the arsenic remains even once it’s on our plate.

So how can we limit our exposure?

  • Chronic exposure comes more often from contaminated water than rice – so get your water tested.
  • While organic farms can still have remnants from historic pesticide use, they can reduce the risk of contamination.
  • Avoid rice and rice products daily. Opt for rotation with other gluten-free grains/pseudo-grains/seeds/roots: quinoa, millet, buckwheat, cassava, oats.
  • Opt for white rice over brown as the husk of rice contains the majority of the arsenic.
  • Purchase rice from lower arsenic areas like white basmati from California, Pakistan or India.
  • Cook your rice like you would pasta with lots of water (6:1 ratio) so you can drain the excess vs. having it all reabsorb back into the rice. This method can remove up to 60% of the arsenic.

 

Mom's Cabbage Rolls

My mom's cabbage roll recipe is a staple for our family. It's a warming and hearty comfort food that's high in protein (and flavour).
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours
Course: Main Course
Keyword: classic recipe, comfort food
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients

For the rolls

  • 1 head green cabbage
  • 2 lbs ground beef (I used grass-fed)
  • 3/4 cup organic California basmati rice (cooked - see notes)
  • 1 large yellow onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth (can sub for extra crushed tomatoes)
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper (freshly ground)

For the sauce

  • 2 cans crushed tomatoes (796 mL)
  • 1 can tomato paste (156 mL)
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 jar sauerkraut (796 mL)

Instructions

For the cabbage

  • Fill an extra large pot with water and bring to a boil on the stovetop.
  • While the water comes to a boil, remove 2-4 leaves from the outside of the cabbage and set aside (we’ll use these to cover the rolls at the end). Cut ¼” off the bottom (stem part) of the cabbage.
  • Once the pot of water is boiling, add the full head of cabbage and take leaves off the outside as they cook. Do not overcook or the leaves will fall apart.
  • Once the leaves have cooled to the touch, use a pairing knife to remove the thicker part of the cabbage stem.

To assemble:

  • Preheat oven to 300F.
  • In a large roasting pan, add one can of crushed tomatoes and tomato paste. Mix until well combined.
  • Layer half of the sauerkraut on top of the tomato mixture. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl add the remaining roll ingredients and mix until well combined.
  • With clean hands, take a small handful of the meat (about ⅓ cup) mixture and place it in the centre of the leaf.
  • Fold in the sides and roll the cabbage up. Place stem side down on top of the sauerkraut/tomatoes in the roasting pan. Repeat with the remaining meat mixture.
  • Top the cabbage rolls with the other tin of crushed tomatoes and top with the remaining sauerkraut.
  • Cover the cabbage rolls with the large leaves and place the lid of the roasting pan on top. Roast in the oven for 3 hours.
  • When done cooking, remove from the oven and let stand for 15 minutes.
  • Take off the top layer of cabbage leaves, plate and spoon extra sauce on top.
  • Serve immediately.

Notes

These are best made the day before and reheated for 30 mins at 350F. This gives time for the flavour profile to deepen overnight.
 
For the meat, my mom uses a 50/50 combination of ground grass-fed beef and pasture-raised pork she gets from the local butcher. If you consume pork, feel free to use this option.
 
For a rice-free version, you can swap for millet or quinoa. For a grain/seed-free version, use “riced” cauliflower.

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Before & Afters

Cupcake ipsum dolor sit. Amet icing candy sesame snaps toffee oat cake jelly I love macaroon.

I love sweet bonbon. Tiramisu I love apple pie. Lollipop macaroon pastry danish. Sweet roll jujubes gummies tootsie roll fruitcake I love liquorice. Wafer chocolate halvah. Liquorice apple pie lollipop sweet roll powder. Oat cake sesame snaps marshmallow cookie jujubes. Croissant pie I love croissant cookie.

client love

next

"

Cupcake ipsum dolor sit. Amet icing candy sesame snaps toffee oat cake jelly I love macaroon.

I love sweet bonbon. Tiramisu I love apple pie. Lollipop macaroon pastry danish. Sweet roll jujubes gummies tootsie roll fruitcake I love liquorice. Wafer chocolate halvah. Liquorice apple pie lollipop sweet roll powder. Oat cake sesame snaps marshmallow cookie jujubes. Croissant pie I love croissant cookie.

client love

next

"

Cupcake ipsum dolor sit. Amet icing candy sesame snaps toffee oat cake jelly I love macaroon.

I love sweet bonbon. Tiramisu I love apple pie. Lollipop macaroon pastry danish. Sweet roll jujubes gummies tootsie roll fruitcake I love liquorice. Wafer chocolate halvah. Liquorice apple pie lollipop sweet roll powder. Oat cake sesame snaps marshmallow cookie jujubes. Croissant pie I love croissant cookie.

client love

next

"