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Hutsul cabbage rolls for the holy supper

Гуцульські голубці




Hutsul cabbage rolls are small, the size of a little finger, rolls which are cooked in the Hutsul region (Carpathian Mountains).


Lean cabbage rolls are one of the main dishes for the Holy Supper.

Hutsul households prepare two pots of cabbage rolls in advance. One pot – lean rolls with rice, corn grits, raw and stewed onions and carrots, and dried dill. And for the Christmas table, such cabbage rolls are prepared with meat, already without the addition of corn grits, and then baked in the oven with lard.


Cabbage for Hutsul cabbage rolls must be pickled. Such cabbage is fermented in whole cabbage heads in a solution of water and salt. Since cabbage rolls can be cooked throughout the year, cabbage is fermented with a reserve until the next season.

A special pot made of clay is traditionally used to prepare Hutsul cabbage rolls.

In such a dish, cabbage rolls, which are baked for several hours in the oven or a wood oven, are incredibly fragrant and tasty.


In the photo, you can see what a pot for cooking cabbage rolls looks like.

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How do you make pickled cabbage for cabbage rolls?

Hutsul cabbage rolls are made exclusively of pickled cabbage.

We take whole white cabbage heads of medium size. We cut out the leg and put the cabbage heads in a dish.

For 12 liters of water we need 1 kg of non-iodized salt. Dissolve the salt in warm water and pour it over the cabbage. We take the amount of solution so that the cabbage floats freely in the solution.

Put it in a warm place.

Pickled cabbage should be soft when pressed and then it will be easy to work with the leaves.

Before cooking cabbage rolls, divide each head of cabbage into separate leaves and cut out the hard part.

Put the prepared cabbage leaves into clean, cold water and leave for 3 hours.

Pickled cabbage is very sour and salty, you need to soak it in water so that the finished dish is not too sour.

Let's move on to cooking cabbage rolls. We know that Hutsul cabbage rolls should be the size of a little finger. Therefore, we divide each leaf of cabbage into 3 - 4 parts, depending on the size of the leaf.
The ingredients are designed for two pots of 3 liters each. The amount of ingredients may differ from that indicated, depending on your needs. The main rule for filling cabbage rolls is to use one part corn grits and three parts rice. One part raw carrots and onions and three parts stewed carrots and onions.
The twisting process
Method of cooking

Before cooking cabbage rolls, soak pickled cabbage leaves in water for three hours, as described above.

Wash the rice, and cook it after the water starts boiling for 10 minutes. Drain and rinse.

Wash the coarsely ground corn grits and cook them after the water starts boiling for 15-20 minutes until half-boiled.

Cut the onion into small cubes. Fry in vegetable oil until it gets soft, add grated carrots, salt and pepper. Cook until the mix gets a light brown color.

In a large bowl, mix rice, corn grits, and fried carrots with onions, dried dill and parsley, add raw chopped onions and raw grated carrots. You can add 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil optionally. Mix everything well.

Grease the inside of the cooking pot with oil. Put cabbage leaves on the bottom so that the cabbage rolls do not burn during cooking.

Cut each leaf of pickled cabbage into 4 parts.

Put the filling on the cabbage using a teaspoon.

Wrap each cabbage roll in the form of a small triangle.

Put the rolls in a pot in circles, with the wider part on the outer edge of the pot.

You can add some vegetable oil between the layers of cabbage rolls.

Pour hot, salted water over the rolls. The water level should end below the surface of the cabbage rolls. Cover the top of the cabbage rolls with cabbage leaves, too.

Heat the oven to 180°C . Cook cabbage rolls for 4-5 hours, periodically checking for readiness. Also control the temperature, you may have to lower it to 160°C.

Cool the dish and store it in the refrigerator.

Cabbage rolls can be served both hot and cold.

Traditionally, Hutsul households prepare 12 Lenten dishes for the Holy Supper: kutya, also called “Wheats”, made of wheat with the addition of poppy seeds, honey and nuts. Hutsul lean cabbage rolls, bread baked from potatoes – boryshnyk, dumplings with cabbage, dumplings with poppy seeds, knyshi with cabbage, fish in rare cases, lean borshch with salted doughnuts, beans with garlic, mushrooms, and potatoes boiled in their skins. The rest of the dishes were prepared from what people had at home and whatever gifts of nature they could encounter during the season.


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