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Alqualonde

Stuffed Cabbage with Roasted Sweet Potato Stuffing

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Traditional stuffed cabbage recipes often feature rice and crumbled beef, but I decided to change things up and create a stuffing with caramelized roasted flavors instead.

Note: To make it vegan just omit the sausage and serve with a side of hummus.

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Ingredients

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled, diced
  • 1 red onion, peeled, diced
  • 1 large tart apple such as Granny Smith, peeled, diced
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 4 sausages, these can be sweet Italian, chicken apple, turkey, buffalom, cut into chunks
  • 1 cup natural apple juice or cider
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic or apple cider vinegar
  • 1 sprinkle of sea salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, fennel
  • handful of raisins or dried cranberries
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups quinoa, cooked
  • 1/2 cup apple juice or cider
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • sea salt, to taste
  • extra virgin olive oil, as needed
  • strained tomatoes (24-ounce jar or can)

Details

Adapted from webmd.com

Preparation

Step 1

Cook your cabbage. You'll need a fresh, large head of green cabbage. Trim the bottom root and cut an X into the center core. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the head of cabbage for about five minutes until soft; remove and drain well.

Make the filling.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

For the filling you'll need:

2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled, diced
1 red onion, peeled, diced
1 large tart apple, such as Granny Smith, peeled, diced
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
4 sausages- these can be sweet Italian, chicken apple, turkey, buffalo, cut into chunks
Extra virgin olive oil, as needed
1 cup natural apple juice or cider
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon balsamic or apple cider vinegar
Sprinkle of sea salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, fennel

To add in later:

A handful of raisins or dried cranberries
1 to 1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa

Throw the vegetables, apple, and sausage into a roasting pan and drizzle with a little olive oil. Add the apple juice, maple syrup, vinegar, salt and spices and toss well to coat. Roast in the oven till soft- about 40 to 50 minutes. Stir a few times during roasting to distribute the sauce and seasoning. Meanwhile make your sauce.

To make your sauce you'll need:

1 24-oz jar or can of strained tomatoes
1/2 cup apple juice or cider
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
Sea salt, to taste

Combine the sauce ingredients in a sauce pan and stir. Cook over medium heat until simmering. Cover and lower the heat to a gentle simmer. Taste test before using in the recipe. If you like a bit of spice, add a dash of hot pepper- but please taste test first.

To assemble:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Lightly oil four serving dishes or one medium-large baking dish.

When the cabbage has cooled enough for you to handle, cut another 1/2 inch or so off the bottom core if you need to and gently peel off the leaves one at a time; set the leaves aside on a plate or board. Trim any large leaves that may have a thick spine. Smaller leaves can be combined- use two to make one roll if you need to.

Combine the roasted vegetables and sausage with the cooked quinoa- start with a cup and see how much you need. If you want to stretch the filling, use more quinoa. Add a handful of raisins and stir in.

To stuff:

Lay a cabbage leaf on your work surface and add a spoonful of filling in the center. Fold in the side of the leaf and roll it up; tuck it into the prepared baking dish seam side down. Repeat for the remaining leaves and filling.

Pour the sauce over the stuffed cabbage and bake in the center of a preheated oven for about 30 minutes, till heated through and bubbling.

You can make this stuffed cabbage ahead of time, if you wish; cover and chill. Add an extra 10 minutes or so to the baking time.

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