I bought a couple of cabbages back when they were on a great sale for St. Patrick's day, I knew that I would make my mother-in-law's cabbage rolls with one of them, but I wasn't sure what I would make with the other. Then I thought about what other meals I was planning such as Greek chicken and Lebanese meatballs and I thought I would try making some cabbage dolmas.
The filling for these rolls is really good, you can really taste the mint and the meat is totally optional, I just added it to make these more appealing to my husband.
1 lb ground beef
1 cup rice
1 onion, diced
1/2 cup fresh mint
1/2 cup fresh parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp allspice
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
juice of 2 lemons
Cut the core out of the cabbage and place into a large pan of boiling water. Cover and let cook for 10-15 minutes to soften the cabbage. Remove and set aside to cool.
In a large bowl, mix together the beef, rice, onion, mint, parsley, garlic, allspice, half the lemon juice, salt and pepper.
Separate the cabbage leaves, and fill each one with around 1/4 cup of filling and roll up.
Place a couple of extra cabbage leaves in the bottom of a large pan, and place the cabbage rolls in the pan. Season with salt and pepper and the remaining lemon juice. Pour enough water to cove the cabbage rolls, bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to simmer and cook for 45 minutes.
Once mine were cooked I decided to pan fry for a couple of minutes to get them a little browned.