Japanese cabbage rolls | Japanese recipes


Break : 10 minutes

1. Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat and sauté the onion for 4-5 minutes or until soft and translucent. Remove from the heat, transfer to a large bowl and let cool completely.

2. Combine panko and milk in a small bowl and let sit for 10 minutes. Add the panko mixture to the cooled onions along with the ground meat, salt, pepper, and allspice or nutmeg and stir in one direction until completely combined. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Core the cabbage and remove the dark green outer leaves. Boil the whole cabbage for about 5 minutes or until some of the outer leaves can be removed. Remove the leaves and return the cabbage to the pot and boil for a few more minutes or until no more leaves can be removed. Continue until you have 8-9 large leaves. Cut the thick stems at the base of the leaves.

4. For the tomato sauce, place all the ingredients in a heavy-bottomed saucepan with a lid that will just fit the rolls in a single layer. Stir to combine.

5. Divide filling into 8 equal portions. Place a cabbage leaf on your work surface and bring the two cut sides close to the base so that they overlap slightly. Place a portion of meat stuffing at the bottom of the sheet and roll up like a spring roll, tucking in the sides as you go. If desired, you can secure the bundle with a stem of spring onion. Place roll, seam side down, in tomato sauce and repeat with remaining leaves and garnish.

6. Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Place the butter on it, then cover the rolls tightly with a piece of parchment paper and a loose lid (otoshibuta) to keep the rolls from moving, then also cover the pan with a lid. Simmer for 35 minutes, then remove from the heat and let stand for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley to serve.

Adam Liaw visits bushfire-affected communities and creates dishes using their local produce in Adam Liaw’s Road Trip for Good.

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