Marina's meatballs are delicious made in this recipe. Enjoy! [ ... ]Read More
Preparing European Stuffed Cabbage Rolls—The Right WayFor some foods, like potatoes, there is no wrong way to make them. For other foods, like the popular European dishes featuring stuffed cabbage, there are a lot of wrong ways to make them. The stuffed cabbage rolls are extremely common, but there are a number of interesting variations across Europe. If you are interested in some of the most interesting and enticing ways stuffed cabbage rolls are made, here are a few variations that are sure to you grab your attention.
Image Source: Wikimedia.orgSome Background Information: Cabbage should almost always be stored in cold water before preparation. Almost all cabbage rolls feature strong similarities: cabbage (obviously!) being stuffed, in some way, baked and then topped with sauce. The variation is in how the leaves are prepared (boiled or peeled off cold) and in what the filling contains. Generally speaking, you need to remove the leaves from the core. You do not want stems in your cabbage roll. The filling (or stuffing) should be a savory mixture of grains, of rice, some meat, and a light sauce to keep the inside moist. In most cases, you will want to place a small amount of stuffing on a prepared cabbage leaf and then fold or shape the leaf according to national custom. Once done, place the cabbage roll, seam side down, and bake. Here are a few interesting variations! Bulgarian Stuffed Cabbage: The Bulgarian national dish of stuffed cabbage roll is called "Sarmi." This variation of the stuffed cabbage roll is one of the most popular versions out there, truly a foodie’s delight. The basic ingredients are cabbage, obviously, stuffed with lean pork, veal, rice, and yogurt or sauerkraut. These rolls are usually topped off with a light tomato and paprika sauce. Making these stuffed cabbage rolls is not that difficult. Take the cabbage, cut out its core and then boil it in hot water. When tender enough, pluck the whole leaves off the cabbage. Heat olive oil in a pan, then add the stuffing: Circle B Ranch ground pork, other meat of choice, the rice, and etc. Place a few leaves down as a base and put the cooled stuffing on top, then wrap excess cabbage leaf around it. Wrap until the stuffing cannot escape and then cook, again, in a pot. This recipe should take around one hour to complete. These stuffed cabbage rolls are eaten as a main course in Bulgaria, and for a good reason; the mixture of the rice, pork, and veal make this among the most savory variations of cabbage roll commonly made in Europe. Polish Stuffed Cabbage: The Polish version of stuffed cabbage rolls is called, "Gołąbki," which is pronounced 'Gaw-Wohmp-kee.' Similar to sarmi, these rolls are stuffed with pork, mature beef and rice, though it is common for the rice to be replaced with barley and these rolls are often cooked on a stovetop until tender. Instead of using cool cabbage, bring the cabbage to a boil. Having done so, place a small amount of the meat mixture into the cabbage leaf, place seam side down and bake for 25-30 minutes. Gołąbki should be smaller in size than Sarmi. This Polish dish is considered both a comfort food and national fare. The Polish version is very popular throughout Eastern Europe, though it usually a lot more of a casual meal than its Bulgarian counterpart. Greek Stuffed Cabbage Rolls: For something a little different, you can attempt the Lahanodolmathes, a Greek stuffed cabbage roll that often uses lamb or goat instead of beef or pork. Similar to the Sarmi, it usually comes with yogurt included in the filler which offers a smooth texture along with the savory meat. The major difference here is that you would substitute the beef filling with lamb. Otherwise, Lahanodolmathes is similar to its Bulgarian and Polish counterparts. For best results with the tomato sauce, let a sauce simmer for thirty minutes to an hour without a lid to thicken, stirring as needed. Season to taste and pour over the finished stuffed cabbage rolls. These traditional cabbage rolls are easier to roll than many of their counterparts, and the rolls are usually covered in a heavy tomato sauce to accent the flavors. Adding a more robust tomato sauce gives this roll a far more robust and Mediterranean flavor. For a fresh tomato flavor, try using Marina's Italian Style Tomato Sauce.
Image Source: Wikimedia.orgKosher Stuffed Cabbage: Though European in origin, the Kosher stuffed cabbage, Holishes, offer an obvious deviation from their counterparts: no pork! Less pork means more room for beef, with eggs, matzoh meal and rice commonly rounding out the stuffing recipe. You can find an interesting recipe here if you would like to try to make these yourself. Holishkes are actually rolled, instead of shaped. Use a similar method to the Gołąbki, but instead of tucking excess leaf, roll the leaf over. Place the rolled cabbage leaf seam side down when baking, of course. Common and popular among the Jewish communities, Holishkes are a staple food that started as a special harvest meal for Sukkot that became a common dish year round. Topped with a sweet and sour sauce based on raisins, this variation of stuffed cabbages really offers something very different than many of its counterparts. Vegetarian Variation: If you are looking for a vegetarian variation on the stuffed cabbage roll, there are a number of interesting directions you can take. While many of the more common recipes are not traditional, they do offer a healthy alternative to those who like stuffed cabbage rolls but do not want the meat. Rice is joined by yellow onion, ripe tomato and seasoned to taste with dill and parsley. This fresh garden variety is a strong choice for those looking for a lighter meal. Final Thoughts: Stuffed cabbage rolls are a surprisingly versatile food that can be used in a number of different ways. These traditional European recipes offer a relatively easy meal choice that you can make with a little bit of practice and the right ingredients. By following these traditional recipes, you should be able to recreate genuine European cuisine without breaking the bank or breaking your back. An interesting, exotic but healthy meal is much easier than you thought it could be! About the Author: This great guest post and delicious recipes were provided to us by Mike Jones from Ice Maker Experts. [ ... ]
Living in Springfield, MO I have to say I miss a really good sandwich. One of my mothers "go to meals" was Veal Chops Pizziola. She came out from Brooklyn to visit me last week so I thought that I would prepare for her my version of Pizziola with Pork. So here goes, here is my take on Pizziola with this Berkshire pork chop recipe. I used the Berkshire Loin Pork Chops, but you can use boneless Berkshire pork chops. Berkshire Pork Chop Recipe:Read More
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 (1 inch thick) Berkshire pork chops (about 10 ounces each)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 small onion, thinly sliced
- 1 32 ounce jar of Marina's Tomato Sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon dried pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
Labor Day weekend is here! To celebrate the end of Summer, most of us will fire up the grill and fill our tables with the tried-and-true classics. BBQ, coleslaw, baked beans, mac-and-cheese, and chips and dips will be plentiful. Most of us will and cook and eat ‘til we drop! Here at Circle B Ranch, we love the classics! But we also love celebrating with ease and with style. So what better way is there to celebrate the achievements of our American workers than to cook up some classic recipes with some delicious twists? For this holiday, we decided to share a few of our tastiest—and time saving—recipes with you. First, let’s start with some delicious meatballs. Marina’s Meatballs are ready to go! Just heat them up and serve with some of Marina’s Italian Style Tomato Sauce! To give them a whole new—and yummy—spin, try Marina’s Meatballs in Mushroom Gravy. And Labor Day isn’t Labor Day if you don’t throw some meat on the fire! Impress your guests with BBQ Ribs. Baby Back or pork ribs= mmm-hmm good. If you don’t want pork, check out our recipe for Slow Braised Boneless Beef Short Ribs. Don't forget the delicious Nitrite Free Big John's Hot Dogs and our full selection Sausage. For those of you who want to skip the grill, you can go a different route with delicious Slow Cooker Apple Juice Pulled Pork. Or try this fantastic Ham Salad recipe! Now for those classic sides! We have coleslaw with a sweet and crunchy twist: Carrot & Apple Slaw with Raisins. A Beans and Weenies Tater Bake and Macaroni and Cheese with Bacon will round out the table. And a party isn’t a party without chips and dip! This flavorful Blue Cheese and Bacon Dip will liven everything up. And don’t forget your must-haves: Marina's Homemade ketchup and Big John's BBQ sauce! This Labor Day, click on the links, follow some easy and incredibly scrumptious recipes, and eat ‘til you drop! Skip the long hours of cooking, kick back, and enjoy some more time with your family. [ ... ]Read More
Over the years, customers have often asked me about the recipes I post on the Circle B Ranch website. Why do I choose a particular recipe? How do I find my recipes in the first place? Honestly, it’s a varied process. Some of my recipes are old family recipes. I am proud of my Italian heritage, and I can think of no better way to show my love for my family and my Italian culture than sharing these traditional recipes with the world. These recipes have been handed down through the generations, and I have chosen to honor the tradition by handing them down to you. Others I find by watching. I avidly watch cooking shows whenever I get a chance. I can’t help it; cooking is in my blood. Whenever I have the television on, I inevitably find myself lost in The Cooking Channel or engrossed in Food Network. My favorites: Bobby Flay (he handles his food with flair and isn’t afraid to try a new flavor or add an interesting spice), Ina Garten (the queen of simple, quick, easy, and incredibly tasty), and Lidia Bastianich (she is steeped in heritage, reminding me of my childhood and learning to cook with my mother, aunt, and grandmother). Other recipes come from the internet and magazines. Of these, I try them out for myself before they go any further. I either choose to leave the recipes alone and share them with you because they already have the perfect combination of flavors. Or I work with the recipes first, adapting them to create the perfect taste for me. After I feel the recipe has been perfected, I then post it to share with everyone. How do I choose my recipes? I look for easy, easy, easy—especially when it comes to breads or baked desserts, since I am honestly not much of a baker. I also look for recipes that will showcase our products. Circle B Ranch raises heritage pork, and John and I are proud to eat our pork products. So I look for dishes that make excellent sides to or toppings for our chops. I keep an eye out for recipes that can highlight the taste of our bacon, sausage or pork. I find recipes that can readily include my sauces. By incorporating our products you as the consumer can see how easy it is to adapt recipes and use all the different products that Circle B Ranch sells. Thank you for reading my story!! [ ... ]Read More
Have you ever wondered what it takes to create Marina’s tasty sauces? Have you ever asked yourself why they taste so good? Let me give you a little insight into the process, and you will find the answers to your questions. On sauce days, Marina begins her day in the kitchen with three other workers. First, they unload the ingredients from her car, if they haven’t been previously delivered, and carry them into the kitchen. Next, one of the workers begins to sterilize the glass jars according to food safety standards, guaranteeing health-safety for Circle B Ranch’s customers. While the jars are sterilized, another worker cleans the kettles. Marina prefers the kettles be cleaned every morning to ensure the kettles are completely disinfected and the quality of her sauces is not compromised. Then Marina and her co-workers start the fun part of their work—making the sauce. A worker processes all fresh ingredients. Every bit of fruit, orange, apple, or pear, is de-cored, sliced, and diced to create the best possible flavor. Ginger is grated. Fresh herbs such as basil are de-stemmed and washed by hand. Marina begins the sauce-making. She adds all ingredients in a specific order during the cooking process. This isn’t as easy as it sounds since each ingredient has to be included at a precise time to generate the desired taste. For example, Marina adds the fresh basil to her tomato sauce exactly 20 minutes before the sauce is finished to wring out the best basil flavor. She says that overcooking the basil will not add flavor but actually detract from it. And she should know due to her experience as owner of an upscale catering company in New Jersey. n a spotless kitchen. This cleanliness guarantees that customers don’t have to worry about the healthiness or superiority of her sauces. It is Marina’s dedication to her consumer and her involvement with each and every sauce that makes all the difference. She chooses the best, freshest ingredients, cooks her sauces with love, and takes every possible step to maintain the quality of her product and the health of her customers. Marina always says that "you need to start with the best ingredients to get the best end product!"Read More
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