Memories and healthy recipes for your dinner table.

Revised Ukrainian Cabbage and Meatballs

Cabbage and Beef

A friend of ours from the Ukraine came to visit not long after we settled in California. As a treat he made dinner that night cooking up cabbage rolls (Holubtsi) among other delectables. Stephen is not so much into trying new things. You could call him a simpleton of sorts. But what he despises more than anything are condiments. So you can imagine what must have gone through his head when our friend placed platter after platter of strange cuisine covered with mayonnaise and ketchup.

I love cabbage rolls but unfortunately I am the only who will eat them since the great mayonnaise feast fiasco. Hence cabbage and meatballs were created. Now, I know a lot of people despise cabbage because either they have been turned off by the look of it or they have tried it and it was gross. I agree. The recipes I have tried in the past use far too much oil or butter resulting in slimy oily cabbage. Cabbage needs to be seasoned well with salt and pepper and a smidgen of oil or butter; just enough to keep it from sticking to the pan while sauteing.

Meatballs:
1/2 pound extra lean ground beef
1/2 pound lean ground pork
1 1/2 pounds lean ground turkey
2 tbsp garlic powder
2 tbsp onion powder
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 cup matzoh meal
2 eggs

In a bowl combine the beef, pork, turkey, seasonings, matzoh meal and eggs. Mix lightly until combined. Shape into balls according to desired size.

Brown meatballs in a skillet then transfer to a 350 degree oven to finish cooking about 20 minutes, turning occasionally. Serve with cooked cabbage.

OR add meatballs to the pan with the cabbage cover and cook until no longer pink about 15 minutes.

Tips:
-Larger meatballs take longer to cook.
-Do not compact the center of the meatballs. They take longer to cook. Instead softly gather the meat together and lightly roll into a ball.

Cabbage:
1 tbsp butter or olive oil
1 small cabbage, shredded thickly
1 tsp salt and
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 cup water or broth

Heat oil in a large skillet, with lid, over medium-high heat. Add cabbage; season with salt and pepper. Saute until cabbage starts to wilt, about 5 minutes. Add the broth and let steam until tender; about 7 minutes.