Myrna's Stuffed Cabbage Soup

Stuffed Cabbage Soup.jpg

When I was growing up, my siblings and I loved it when Mother made stuffed cabbage.  (Actually, we loved it when she made anything because she was such a good cook; however, there was something very special about her stuffed cabbage!)

I could never understand why she didn't make it more often than she did…that is, until I began making it for my own family and went through that "process" each time!   As I did so, I drew upon my memories of watching Mother patiently steaming a head of cabbage, very gently removing its leaves from the cabbage head, then generously stuffing those softened (hopefully!) leaves with her mixture of ground beef, canned tomatoes and rice.

Well, dear friends, one is never too old to get smart! ha  I decided, some time ago, that all that actually mattered was the taste..... it wasn't necessary to go through all that steaming, tugging, pulling, wrapping, etc.  I decided that if I just put all the ingredients in a big pot and let it cook, it would taste just as good...... and I'd probably tend to make it more often.   And, much to my delight, my hubby and all my children seem to think I'm a genius.  We enjoy eating it as soon as it's done, and I still have lots left to put into freezer containers.

Here's what I do:

Get out my big electric Toastmaster roaster (temporarily a soup pot) and place it where I want to cook the stuffed cabbage soup.

Just as I "did what came naturally" regarding making this food dish "fit" my lifestyle -- in other words, I didn't want to spend any more time than necessary in preparation -- you can do the same.  It goes without saying that you can use a big pot on the stove or a crockpot to prepare this recipe if you don't have a large electric roaster. 

If you like using a crockpot or slow cooker, the ingredient portions would just be less, and the cooking process would just take longer.  The only uncertainty is when you'd add the rice so that it wouldn't end up "mush," so ... experiment!

Lift out the liner of the roaster and place it on the kitchen counter.  Dump into the liner the following ingredients:

  • Raw ground beef (I use about three pounds)
  • Canned tomatoes (I use three 28-ounce cans of Hunt's Petite Diced Tomatoes)
  • Uncooked rice (I use about one cup)  
  • Cabbage (I use three small-to-medium heads, cut up)
  • Fill the liner with water; and add beef bouillon granules and Lawry's Seasoned Salt to taste
  • Mix well (It won't be pretty! Ha)

Return the liner to the roaster and cover.  Turn the roaster on high and let the contents cook for two or three hours, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until the rice is done and the soup tastes good.   Turn off roaster.  Serve soup, or let it cool and put into freezer containers for lots of wonderful last-minute meals.  (I think it tastes even better after being frozen.)

This is such a great winter oven meal in Illinois, but while we lived in Arizona, I didn't like heating up the kitchen.  So, Phil set up a small folding table on the back patio.  Then he placed the Toastmaster roaster (minus the liner) on the folding table and plugged it into a nearby electrical outlet.  Once I had put all the ingredients for the stuffed cabbage soup into the roaster liner, Phil would take it from the kitchen to the patio for me (it's heavy) and place the liner in the Toastmaster roaster.  I covered the roaster, turned it on high, and we forgot it (except to stir occasionally) until the stuffed cabbage soup was done and ready to eat.  So good! © Phil White 2014, 2016, 2019,2020