I’ve been wanting to try a cabbage roll with Italian flavors for awhile. I’ve done Asian-inspired rolls before but wanted to branch out. I love Napa cabbage and found a huge head of it at the store so it seemed like a good day to try this recipe. This recipe tastes a little like Italian wedding soup, all wrapped up. You could easily serve it in a broth or with a marinara, or even over some risotto.
Ten to 12 leaves Napa cabbage
1 lb ground Italian sausage (I used turkey, but pork will do too)
One onion, finely diced
2 cups chicken broth (I use bone broth)
1/2 cup Italian farro – this is optional, omit if gluten-free
1 tablespoon garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon each of salt, pepper, chili flakes and garlic powder.
1 tsp Italian seasoning, or fresh or dried chopped herbs of your choosing.
Parmesan cheese and cherry tomatoes, to garnish
Sauté the onion in a little bit of avocado oil until it is soft, about 3-4 minutes. Add the turkey and chop it up into tiny pieces with the spatula, and sauté about five minutes. add the spices and herbs. Add one cup of the broth and bring it to a simmer. Add the farro and simmer about ten minutes (you may have to add a bit more liquid to get the farro to soften enough). Add the tomato paste and stir it all together, remove from heat.
Add the second cup of broth to a stock pot or large pan. Bring it to a simmer. Take the cabbage leaves (washed and prepped) and place them on top of the broth, to steam for five minutes.
Pull them out onto a cutting board, draining excess liquid, and let them cool just until you can handle them. Scoop the sausage mixture into the leaves in equal parts, roll them and secure them with a toothpick. Place them back into the pan you steamed them in and let them simmer/steam covered on low for about another ten minutes.
I am a mom of two and wife to a martial arts school owner, full-time social media professional and avid cook and gardener. I love creating recipes and involving my kids in the process. The food we cook is usually dairy-free and gluten-free, and sometimes paleo, but we make exceptions (ahem, sourdough bread). The “hippie” part of this blog comes into play in the ingredients we use—I’m pretty vigilant about the health of my family and you could even call me “crunchy.” The “modern” part is that I am busy! You won’t catch me making my own nut milk or churning butter (not that there’s anything wrong with that). I’m more than happy to take the shortcuts provided by our lovely grocery stores and online shopping —especially in the midst of this global pandemic.