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Old 12-19-2006, 09:27 AM   #21
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We've never had any trouble with the uncooked rice. Of course, they're usually left to simmer for quite a while before eating them. (No concerns here with cabbage being sealed too tight, either)

And of course, on the odd occasion that there are any leftovers - they're even better the next day.

I have a roaster full of them simmering away right now here at work for the office potluck. Made them last night, and they've been going since 7am. It's 9:30 now, figure I might be able to hold out for another 30 minutes or so....


John
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Old 12-19-2006, 09:32 AM   #22
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Thanks to this thread, this is what I'll be fixing for Christmas dinner for the hubby and I!! Hope I can hold out that long!!
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Old 12-19-2006, 09:42 AM   #23
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ronjohn - Cool. Now that you mention cooking time, I felt I needed to add something else I forgot to mention.

My previous cooking time recommended by a few of my trusted books was 45-75minutes which brought the filling to 165F. This provided for a tender filling, but the flavors didn't develop enough and the cabbage still had too much tooth for my liking. I let another batch go about 3hrs, and felt they came out perfect. The ground meat went from the tender, to the overcooked, to the "braised" stage. So the final product was still tender, but also had an incredible amount of flavor passed around. I did find that this process generated extra juices though. My first thought was that the rice could have cooked in the amount that was released. I'm worried about the rice in the top of the rolls though that is above the level of the liquid. I suppose in a covered steaming environment it should cook. I guess I'll find out next batch...

Still have those two extra raw ones to cook up using bacon to try how that extra flavor component pans out.
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Old 12-19-2006, 09:46 AM   #24
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Nicholas, I do mix in a bit of the sauce with the meat/rice mixture before rolling in the cabbage. Just the way I was taught and it does add more flavor. If you are worried about the rice not cooking all the way, you can use the instant rice; in fact that was the secret to an old neighbor's recipe that taught me to make these. I use regular long grain as I do cook these for a long time in the oven. Will have to try them in the crockpot but I always forget I have them.
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Old 12-19-2006, 09:48 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shunka
Thanks to this thread, this is what I'll be fixing for Christmas dinner for the hubby and I!! Hope I can hold out that long!!
Here... Let me help!

John
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Old 12-19-2006, 03:14 PM   #26
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Looks good ronjohn!

One thing I'm trying to prevent though, is the separation and/or thinning of the sauce. See how on yours there are tomato solids on the tops of the rolls, and a thin broth around the edges? Thats the way my first couple batches were. Building a sauce with roux helps some, but the sauce still ends up a bit thin such as in my photo. I'm hoping that using uncooked rice will help absorb some of the liquids given off by the breakdown of the cabbage and meat tissues (combined with the Roux).

Some recipes recommend building a sauce separately, and then serving the rolls on it after simmering in broth and tomato juice.

I'm also considering the use of a technique used in many other braised dishes. Remove the rolls, and reduce the sauce/add more roux, then re-introduce the rolls to the thickened/concentrated sauce. Running the tomaters through a food mill first helps too, as it prevents the tomato solids from weeping later on.

Hit Barnes & Noble again today and picked up some new recipes to try out from their Polish cookbook collection. Some of the books looked like they hadn't been updated in 50yrs, but the recipes were incredibly elegant through their simplicity. I noticed in a few of those old recipes the use of old bread soaked in milk as a component for the stuffing. Many of the old recipes didn't seem to include rice either. I like rice in mine though.

Oh well, tomorrow I'm going to fire off another couple batches.
You guys are making me hungry with the talk and photos!
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Old 12-19-2006, 04:00 PM   #27
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LOL!

See, now the sauce has never been an issue with us! Half the family loves the top golabki like that, and the other half always digs for the ones on the bottom, dropping the top ones back in where the sauce reabsorbs the tomato.

But yes, using a roux to make a tomato "gravy" would help with that.


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Old 12-19-2006, 04:21 PM   #28
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Yup, you got me drooling all over my keyboard now ronjohn!!!!!! Your's looks just the same as mine do and I think I am moving up the making of these by a couple of days. If I keep looking at your picture, it will have to be as soon as tomorrow!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 12-20-2006, 12:13 PM   #29
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I'm putting off the next batch until tomorrow.
I forgot I have a chicken I bought that needs cooking.

Back to Golabkis tomorrow...
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Old 12-20-2006, 03:15 PM   #30
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My heritage is Ukranian. My mother used to spread undiluted Campbells Tomato Soup between layers of Cabbage rolls-OR Campbells Cream of Mushroom Soup. The Cabbage rolls had a rice/onion/ground beef filling. I also remember we'd core the cabbage head, blanch it in boiling water, then thinly pare the spine of each leaf to make rolling easier.The old, damaged leaves lined the bottom of the roaster. Ah, 50 year old memories are fun. Happy Hollidays. Paul
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Old 12-20-2006, 03:47 PM   #31
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romanticf16...I am Ukranian as well and that sounds very similar to the way I do it with the coring, blanching, paring (some wonderful scars and burns from that process), but instead of the Campbells' what I do is just line a turkey roaster with the garbage leaves that you can't use, fill it to the top with goblackis, cover the top with another row of throw away leaves and then a heavy layer of ketchup...However instead of the usual tomato sauce I like mine with a nice onion-mushroom gravy or just melted butter...thats just how my family always ate them.
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Old 12-21-2006, 08:19 AM   #32
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Using undiluted tomato soup is something I have been thinking a great deal about. Actually, it's what inspired my use of tomatoes, chicken stock, and roux with my last batch (essentially what a traditional tomato soup is based on along with a few extras). But the "sauce" that I cooked my golabkis in had the consistency of soup, rather than a condensed version. I'm going to make a sort-of "Tomato Demi" to cook my rolls in next batch.

One of the things I'm trying to do is finish with a sauce rather than a broth. I think using uncooked rice will soak up the released fluids from the meats/vegetables (also increasing flavor), and the simmering "Tomato Demi" will provide the viscosity I'm after.

Still need to try that bacon in a batch too...

EDIT: The thickened "Tomato Demi" would be similar to the highly thickened bechamels that some people use for Lasagna. I have high hopes for my next batch...
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Old 12-21-2006, 08:26 AM   #33
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Nicholas, the sauce I make is tomato sauce with a touch of sugar and a touch of lemon juice. After the cabbage rolls are done, I thicken the juices with a cold water/corn starch slurry. Then pour this back over the rolls. I make extra sauce to put over the potatoes I always serve with this. Otherwise, my recipe is just like Ronjohn's. I did throw together a salmon mixture years ago for one daughter that would not eat red meat and did not care much for tomato based sauces. I made a mushroom-white sauce to cover those.
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Old 12-21-2006, 08:37 AM   #34
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Thickening after is something I've also considered (and need to try!). I would probably use a roux though, so that it won't weep on me after a night in the 'fridge.

Thanks Shunka!
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Old 12-21-2006, 08:56 AM   #35
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I never had any "weeping" problems with any leftover. I make a huge batch so that I can freeze some of the rolls with the sauce (these do freeze very well!). Hubby loves to take some with him on the road and it makes it easy if I want just a few at the last minute.
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Old 12-21-2006, 10:20 AM   #36
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Shunka - Interesting. Usually corn starch only holds for a few hours when I cook, and then I begin to see small pools of water/juices forming again on the surface.

I love braises like Golabki too! They freeze excellent, and usually get better the longer they have to sit in their sauce! A good braise/stew is my favorite type of dish to cook and eat. It's like magic...
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Old 12-31-2006, 11:46 AM   #37
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Finally back to doing some cookin' today. Trying a a few new things for my Golabki's...
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Old 12-31-2006, 11:53 AM   #38
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Enjoy eating them!! I am glad I had frozen most of the batch I made last week; the oldest daughter took half of them home when she surprised us with a visit on Christmas Day!! She was happy to see the extra sauce they were frozen in.
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Old 01-01-2007, 10:31 AM   #39
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Playing around with some sauces. I feel that the golabkis themselves are great, but my sauce still needs work. Off to the kitchen...
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Old 01-02-2007, 08:50 AM   #40
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I dunno. Throwing in the towel on these for awhile. The recipes I have are good, but I'm looking for something more than good.

I'll have to start scanning the papers for church fairs in the polish neighborhoods. There always seem to be good golabki's at those things. Perhaps I can pick some ideas up there.

It's my sauce that I can't seem to get 100% to my liking.

I have one more experiment to try this weekend... maybe that one will do it.
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