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Grandma's Ukrainian Cabbage Rolls (Galumpki)

10:49 AM

Galumpki are something that my grandma used to make for us regularly while we were growing up.  They were one of my favorite things ever, but I failed to get the recipe from grandma before she passed away 10 years ago. I just couldn't bring myself to make them, b/c I couldn't for the life of me figure out what the sauce was that she put over the top of them.
Then, the other day, I decided that I just needed to go for it.  So I did... and I hit it spot on.

Grandma's Galumpkis
1 head of cabbage ( you will need 12-16 large leaves)
1 lb 90/10 ground beef
 2 cups cooked brown rice (she used minute rice... i like brown)
1 cup onion, finely chopped
1 egg
Salt to taste

1 quart organic tomato soup (I used Imagine brand)
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1 lb bacon

Core the head of cabbage and wash well. Fill a large pot saucepot with about 2 inches of salted water. Bring the water to a boil over medium heat. Add the head of cabbage, core side down. Cover and cook for 10 minutes or until the outer cabbage leaves are tender but not mushy.

Carefully remove the head of cabbage from the pot. Run under cold water until it can comfortably be handled. Gently separate the leaves. If some of the inner leaves are still raw, return the head to the boiling water for a few more minutes.  Repeat procedure until you have 12-16 leaves of cabbage.

If you want a thick sauce (like, tomato paste thick, as opposed to sauce thick), put your tomato soup in a pot on the stove and reduce it until it is the desired consistency.   Add lemon juice.  Set aside.

Put the ground beef, cooked rice, onion, egg, and salt into a large bowl and combine well using either your hands, or a spoon.  

Get out a large, glass casserole dish and oil it with either olive oil, or nonstick spray.

Put a large spoonful (or two) of the beef and rice mixture into each cabbage leaf. Fold the ends of each leaf in on themselves and roll up each galumpki as if you're rolling a burrito.

Place rolled-up galumpkis in the greased casserole dish one at a time, as you make them.

Start your bacon cooking in a skillet.  Fry it until it is cooked, but not yet crispy.  Remove from skillet and allow to cool, and then cut it up into little pieces (to be spread over the top... I actually forgot bacon for the galumpkis in the picture, and it was SORELY missed).  

Pour the tomato sauce over the cabbage rolls, and sprinkle bacon over the top.

Bake at 350 degrees, covered, for 30 minutes. Uncover. Bake another 15 minutes or until ground beef is done through. 


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