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Beet Leaf Holubtsi

Beet Leaf Holubtsi

When I plan my garden I have a few must have veggies that are top priority in my kitchen.

Number one on that list is beets.

Fresh beets from the garden.

Beets are the more versatile vegetable I grow. I use the entire plant, and especially love the leaves. You can use the baby leaves in salads or wash and freeze them for smoothies. But to truly enjoy them allow them to grow a little longer until they are about 2 1/2 inches wide. The perfect size for rolling them around a creamy rice, bacon, dilly onion filling.

I have been making Beet Leaf Holubtsi for years. The tender leaves make the perfect blanket for the rice with fresh dill and onions. Bacon is NOT required but makes a nice addition to the rolls.

They are finished off by topping them with a bit of butter and baking them in whipping cream with some shaved onion.

I like to pick the leaves the day before, Wash the leaves and place on sheets of paper towel to dry. Once dry I put them in a large bowl, cover it with a clean tea towel and leave them in the fridge over night. The next day you will find them lightly wilted and ready for rolling. I have read of a few methods of wilting the leaves, from freezing them to placing them in the oven. I have tried the oven method with okay but very time consuming results. Just pop them in the fridge for the night. Trust me.

 

Beet Leaf Holubtsi

beet leaves

2 cups of white rice

2 tablespoons of butter

6 slices of bacon – diced

1 medium onion – chopped

whipping cream

fresh dill

salt & pepper

Prepare the rice according to the package directions.  Meanwhile fry bacon, after 5 minutes add 1 tablespoon of butter and chopped onion. It is done when the bacon is crisp. Pour the bacon and onions, over the rice. Add a generous amount of freshly chopped dill and stir to combine. Now is a good time to season with salt and pepper.  Add a 1/4 cup of whipping cream, stirring until it all becomes creamy.

Beet leaf holubtsil filling on Nutmeg Disrupted

Place a beet leaf on a cutting board and trim the bottom part straight across to remove the stem. Place a generous teaspoon of filling on the trimmed edge of the beet leaf and roll it towards the tip. Gently place the roll in a greased/buttered baking dish. Repeat until you have used all the leaves and filling.

Beet leaf holubtsi on Nutmeg Disrupted

*They are not rolled like cabbage rolls when in when making cabbage rolls you tuck the edges in when rolling. It is fine to leave the edges of the beet leaf holubtsi open.

Beet leaf holubtsi on Nutmeg Disrupted

Pour whipping cream and a few teaspoons of shaved onion over the rolls just until lightly covered. Add the remaining tablespoon of butter.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

 

 

 

 

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Cabbage Rolls

Cabbage Rolls

Well Thanksgiving has come and gone.

It blew in with some fierce west winds over the rockies and took out the power in my town for most of the day.

I tossed around the idea of BBQing the turkey.

Deep frying it was not really an option in 95 km an hour winds. Burning down the neighbourhood is not on my list of things to do, at least not for Thanksgiving. Thats more along the lines of Halloween night fun! Or an April Fools Day stunt gone bad.

Plus, I am a die hard stuffing fan so I made the executive decision…….we would eat out … postpone supper until the next day. Besides,  really for myself, one of  the best parts of the day is the wonderful aroma of roasted turkey filling the house!

I took advantage of the delay to get the holubtsi done early.

Being the good Ukrainian girl that I am, it is not a proper holiday meal without cabbage rolls. Nice tiny 2 bite ones, made with sour cabbage for that extra level of flavour!

Cabbage Rolls from Nutmeg Disrupted

Recently I have been baking them 2 ways, one the traditional way, with tomato soup but took the idea from the Nalysnyky I love so much and started cooking them with dill and cream.

Cabbage Rolls from Nutmeg Disrupted

They are so nice, and a great change from the traditional way I am used to them. They have a creamy texture and the dill flavour really comes through and the cream cuts the sourness of the cabbage.

Cabbage Rolls
 
Author:
Recipe type: Side Dish
Cuisine: Ukrainian Traditional
Ingredients
  • 1 head of cabbage
  • 2-3 cups of vinegar
  • 3 cups of Minute rice or any long grain white rice you prefer
  • 1 lb. of bacon (chopped)
  • 1 large white onion (chopped)
  • ¼ cup of butter or margarine
  • Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Remove the core from the cabbage using a sharp knife.
  2. Place the cabbage cored side down in a large pot, add the 2 cups of vinegar and enough water to cover the cabbage.
  3. Bring the water to a simmer over medium heat.
  4. Once the cabbage leaves start to separate from the head, carefully using tongs, remove the leaves. Once all the leave are separated from the head allow to cool.
  5. In a pot make the rice according to package directions.
  6. Once rice is done move it to a large mixing bowl and add the butter and pepper.
  7. Meanwhile in a skillet fry the bacon and onion until cooked through but not crunchy.
  8. Once the bacon and onions are cooked pour over the rice, drippings included. Stir well to combine thoroughly.
  9. Take a cabbage leaf and split it down the center removing the tough rib part.
  10. If the leaves are large, slice the half of the cabbage leaf in half again.
  11. Place a large teaspoon of the filling at one end of the leaf and roll up tucking in the sides.
  12. Repeat with the remaining leaves and filling.
  13. Layer the cabbage rolls in a greased casserole dish.
  14. You can dot with butter, cover with foil and bake in a 325*F over for 1 ½ hours.
  15. The way we make them is using 1 can of tomato soup mixed with a half can of water and poured over the casserole.
  16. Bake for the same amount of time but place foil under the dish as it will cook over!
  17. And most recently I have been baking them with 1½ cups of whipping cream, with a tsp of fresh chopped dill and 2 tablespoons of butter.
  18. Combine and pour over the cabbage rolls.
  19. Cover with foil. Bake for 1½ hours.

If you are freezing your cabbage rolls you can do it a few different ways :

#1:   line a cookie sheet with foil and spray lightly with Pam. Place a the cabbage rolls onto the cookie sheet and pop in the freezer. Once the rolls are frozen place in a ziplock freezer bag.

#2:   layer the cabbage rolls into a freezer safe container, preferably one that can go straight into the oven. Cover with plastic wrap then with foil.

Of course, that is just a small part of my Thanksgiving feast!

 

We haven’t talked about the stuffing, perogies, homemade cranberry sauce or the awesome turkey pot pies created from what was left of my 15 pound bird!

But that, of course, is another post.

Holubtsi on FoodistaHolubtsi

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