I had been avoiding the giant head of green cabbage in my refrigerator for about two weeks. I just did not know what to do with it...and my cravings for sauerkraut are rare. Surprisingly, when I pulled it out for inspection today, it was still edible! In fact, it was crisp and glowing! However, I knew its shelf life was dwindling so I began the search for a cabbage recipe to get myself acquainted with this hearty green.
I found an interesting idea on Allrecipes.com...cabbage rolls! They seemed simple to make and did not look anything like sauerkraut. There is even a video demonstrating how to make them (check it out here). However, I did not have ground beef or tomato soup in my cupboard (not a shock). However, I did have salsa and tons of vegetables! Therefore, I concocted these vegetarian Mexican cabbage rolls.
These require some time, but they are truly delicious and incredibly healthy!
You will need:
-2-3 servings of cooked brown rice
-1/4 red and yellow pepper
-1/2 yellow onion
-1-2 chard leaves
-1 egg, whisked
-chili spice, salsa spice, Mexican spices, or a package of taco/guacamole seasoning
-9-10 cabbage leaves
Chop all your veggies and throw them in a bowl with the cooked rice. Mix well, adding your seasonings. I used these:
southwest seasoning, Mexican spice mix, and chili spice
Can you tell I like to re-use spice bottles??
Add the egg and mix well. Your filling is ready to go!
As for the cabbage leaves, check out that video (here) to see a great way to separate the leaves and soften them in boiling water. Fill the softened cabbage leaves with your filling (about 1/4-1/3 cup in each leaf) and top with fresh cilantro.
Roll it up and secure with a toothpick!
As for cooking the rolls, you can do this one of three ways:
1. Put them in a skillet with the salsa, cover and simmer for 30-40 minutes
2. Put them in a crock-pot with salsa and cook on low for...as long as you like??
3. Put them in an oven-safe dish with salsa, cover with aluminum foil and bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes
I did a combination of 1 and 3, however, I pulled them out of the oven prematurely. They were still tasty but the cabbage was a little tough.
Serve with fresh avocado and maybe some cheese! And for dessert...
Confession: I gobbled a handful of dark chocolate chips later...that sweet tooth never sleeps!
As you can tell, Mr. PT and I continue our obsession with vegetables so I hope you readers are not getting veggied-out. I hope I am demonstrating some easy, appealing ways to include more wholesome nutrients in your diet. You can always add chicken or other lean meats to these dishes...whatever your preference! The important take home message is to try and eat fruits and vegetables every day. You don't have to eat them all day (although if you do, more power to you!), but they are too good to ignore on a daily basis.
Combine with...learning a new sport? When is the last time you slipped on that softball glove? How long has it been since you've hit a tennis ball? What exactly is frisbee golf?? Grab your spouse or a friend and try something new. You will strengthen some hidden muscles and challenge your mind...a personal trainer's dream workout!