Holubtsi (Ukrainian Cabbage Rolls)

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Preparation time:
Cooking time: 2 hours

Difficulty: Medium - some experience needed
Serves: 4-6


1 medium-sized head of cabbage
3 medium onions, chopped
2-3 tbsp butter or margarine
1/2 lb hamburger
2 cups long grain rice for one medium cabbage
1-19 oz can tomato juice
4 tsp salt
ground pepper


1. Preheat oven to 400*F
2.Remove the core, and steam the cabbage. When steaming the cabbage don't over-do it--just long enough so the leaves will separate easily.
3. Fry onions in butter until they are transparent. Parboil the rice in a little water (just to cover the rice) and bring to a low simmer. Watch carefully - just until water is absorbed. The rice will still be a little 'hard'. It will soften up during baking.
4.Add raw ground beef, and fried onions. Mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
5.Grease a roaster (a small covered enameled roaster works well, but a covered casserole dish should be just fine) with a little oil and cover the bottom and sides of the roaster with the outer cabbage leaves. Roll filling in an inner cabbage leaf to make a roll. Place rolls in roaster, fitting them snugly together with the seam on the bottom to prevent unrolling. Rolls can be placed in layers to fill the roaster. 6.When the rolls are all in place, pour the tomato juice on top.
7.Cover all of the cabbage rolls with left over cabbage leaves.
8.Cover the roaster, then bake in the oven at 400° F for 30 minutes, then decrease temperature to 350° for 1 to 1-1/2 hours.

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