Growing up my aunt was quite the cook, especially when it came to Polish cooking. One of my favorite dishes was her recipe for stuffed cabbage that was filled with some sort of meat and rice. Years later, my mouth still waters when I think about it, but since I don't eat that much meat, I usually opt to make a vegetarian version like this recipe for Stuffed Cabbage with Kale & Leeks that are cooked in tomatoes. This recipe is great for lunch or dinner for two.
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STUFFED CABBAGE WITH QUINOA, KALE & LEEKS FOR TWO
1 cup cooked quinoa
4 leaves from a whole cabbage, like Savoy, blanched
8 to 10 stalks tuscan kale, chopped
2 leeks, finely chopped (white parts only)
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped, divided
1 small can diced tomatoes
Fresh thyme sprigs
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare quinoa per instructions, set aside. Fill a large bowl with about 10 to 12 ice cubes and cold water, set aside. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Carefully place entire cabbage into boiling water. Cook for about 5 minutes or until color begins to darken slightly. Place in ice bath. Meanwhile, place kale, leeks and two cloves of garlic in a pan, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper and sauté until cooked down. Add quinoa into mixture and mix to combine. Gently peel four layers of cabbage from head. Add a large scoop of filling into leaf. Fold like a burrito. Pour can of tomatoes, 1 clove of garlic and thyme sprigs in a small casserole dish. Place stuffed cabbage on tomatoes*. Cook for 15 minutes. Serve topping with tomatoes.
*For softer cabbage, place tomatoes on top, as well as the bottom.
Photography and Styling by Alison