Golumpki (Stuffed Cabbage)

4 large cabbage leaves, vein removed
¾ lb. ground beef
¾ lb. ground pork
½ cup cooked rice
2-3 teaspoons salt
2-3 teaspoons pepper
½ white onion, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
2 teaspoons olive oil
3-4 cups crushed tomatoes




Preheat oven to 350oF. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Remove the large, hard lower portion of the center vein of the cabbage leaves, being careful not to tear the leaves. Add the cabbage leaves to the boiling water and cook until the leaves have softened. Remove leaves, draining excess water and set aside. Prepare the filling by heating olive oil in a large, oven safe skillet. Sauté garlic and onions until onions are translucent. In a large bowl, combine pork, beef, cooked rice, sautéed onions and garlic, and season with salt and pepper. Mix with your hands, combining all of the ingredients. Divide mixture into 4 equal portions. Place the cabbage leaves on a clean surface so that it creates a "cup" like bowl, with the stem side closest to you. Using one of the divided portions of the beef and pork combination, form the meat into the shape of an oval. Place the meat at the base of the cabbage, closest to the stem. Carefully roll the meat in the cabbage, folding in the sides of the leaves to cover the meat, similar to making a burrito or egg roll. Repeat the process with the other 3 cabbage leaves. In the same skillet, add crushed tomato and season with salt and pepper (and other herbs as you wish). Place the cabbage rolls, tightly next to each other, seam side down into the olive oil. Cover the entire pan with aluminum foil and place in the oven and cook until internal temperature reaches 160oF, about 30-60 minutes. Carefully remove the pan and serve the golumpki by ladling some of the tomato sauce over the cabbage roll.