Stuffed Cabbage Recipe

Want to add a new and vegan dish to your Christmas Eve dinner? Try making this stuffed cabbage dish from Ukraine.

From "Please to the Table"
Winter 2014-15

  • While rice-based fillings are perhaps the most widespread, it's also not unusual for stuffed cabbage rolls to be made with barley or buckwheat groats.
    Photo by Fotolia/imagesetc

Stuffed vegetables of many sorts are well loved throughout the Slavic countries. One of the most common made is from blanched, stuffed cabbage leaves rolled up like a spring roll and then baked in the oven covered with some type of sauce. While rice-based fillings are perhaps the most widespread, it is also not unusual for them to be made with barley or buckwheat groats. The dark, earthy flavor of buckwheat marries well with mushrooms and is also perfect for our Christmas Eve feast which celebrates the richness of the land.

For the filling, use a sweet storage carrot—like the 'Chantenay,' and a pungent storage onion—like the 'Australian Brown' or 'Stuttgarter.' You can also grow your own buckwheat.

The best type of cabbage for holubtsi is a cultivar that doesn't have too tight of a head, making it easier to remove the cabbage leaves in one piece. As a result, try one of the cone-head cabbages, such as 'Bacalan De Rennes,' 'Couer De Boeuf,' 'Des Vertus,' Cour Di Bue,' 'Early Jersey Wakefield,' or 'Henderson’s Charleston Wakefield.'

This recipe is part of a series that includes a number of vegetarian holiday recipes. Find more history and inspiration at A Ukrainian Christmas Eve.


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