stuffed cabbage leaves
from my friend, "Debra," who makes this often because of its "simplicity" (it really is the simplest Arabic dish I've heard of), Spring 2001
∑ 2 med. heads cabbage
∑ 3 C rice
∑ 1 lb ground meat
∑ 1/2 C vegetable oil
∑ 1 t salt
∑ 1 t Arabic spices
∑ 1 t cumin
1. Soak rice 15 mins. Drain and rinse.
2. Separate cabbage leaves. Rinse. Boil large pot of water.
3. Place several leaves at in the boiling water for two minutes.
4. Remove and repeat until all leaves have been boiled.
5. Combine rice, meat, oil, salt and Arabic spices.
6. Remove the large vein from the middle of each cabbage leaf.
7. Place the veins in the bottom of a large pot (this way, if anything burns, it is the vein and nothing else).
8. Cut larger leaves in half.
9. Place 1 to 1 1/2 T of meat/rice mixture between two of the smaller veins on a cabbage leaf a little ways up from the bottom.
10. Roll the bottom of the leaf over the meat mixture.
11. Continue rolling until the leaf is completely wrapped around the mixture.
12. Place in pot on top of veins.
13. Repeat above until all leaves are gone or until the meat mixture is gone or until the pot is 2/3 full (either continue with another pot or save the rest for another time).
14. Add water to the pot until it is visible between the rolled leaves in the top layer, but do not cover completely.
15. Sprinkle with cumin (this helps reduce the gas-producing properties of the cabbage) and salt.
16. Bring to a boil.
17. Reduce heat until water is simmering. Simmer 45 mins.
Hint: This makes a lot, and can get old after a meal or two, so you might want to divide the recipe, unless you're serving a crowd.
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