Cooking time : 15 minutes for the stuffing, 1 1/2 hours for the cabbage, plus 15 minutes in the oven.
Ingredients for 4 people :
1 curly cabbage of 1 kilo
1 carrot, 1 leak, 2 onions, celery.
1 bouquet garni (bunch of mixed herbs)
50 grams of rice.
100 grams of sausage meat
100 grams of minced beef or veal.
3 eggs 50 grams of grated gruyère
salt and pepper
Bring some salted water to the boil and put the cabbage in it for 10 minutes, then let it cool down.
Remove the leaves and keep the best ones which should be laid flat on a towel. Keep a few other leaves which will be used to complete your “capoun”.
Fry the chopped onion in olive oil. Add the minced meat by sprinkling it into the pan, then the chopped heart of the cabbage, and finally the peeled and finely chopped garlic, the thyme and a sprig of chopped parsely. Allow this to cook slowly for 15 minutes.
While this is cooking, boil the rice for 15 minutes in salted water.
Off the heat mix together the rice, the onion-meat mixture, the beaten eggs and the grated cheese.
Check the taste and add lots of pepper.
Now insert a ball of stuffing in each cabbage leaf. Carefully close in order to create a sort of baby cabbage, ensuring that the stuffing cannot escape. Tie up each packet with string.
Put the packets into a deep pot, cover them with a good chicken bouillon and add the carrot, leak, celery and bouquet garni.
Bring the bouillon to the boil and leave your packets to simmer with the lid on for an hour and a half.
Take out the packets and after having removed the string, place them in a gratin dish and allow them to dry out for 15 minutes in a hot oven. The bouillon can be served separately, or with another meal on fried croutons and with some cheese.
One can add a tomato sauce to the “capouns” before placing them in the oven or, more simply,
serve them covered with a thin layer of tomato sauce sprinkled onto them through a vegetable mill with a fine grill.
Any that are broken and also the remainder of the stuffing can be used to supplement the bouillon the same evening. Some gourmets fry the “capoun” cut into small thick slices in olive oil. In season one can also add a handful of peas to the stuffing.
You can also dry the “capouns” in the oven, adding to them a little tomato sauce.