These cabbage rolls were made with purple cabbage from our Intervale Food Hub share. These folks support the local food system by creating a type of community supported agriculture (CSA) from a conglomeration of local, organic farms. I used a very basic recipe from About.com and modified the method for getting the cabbage off of the head. I also used arrowroot powder instead of cornstarch (kudzu would also work).
To remove the leaves, use a large chef’s knife and cut around the core at about a 45 degree angle. Remove the core. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. When boiling, place the head of cabbage in the pot. It should take about 3 minutes to soften up the outer leaf. I used chopsticks to remove the leaves one by one and set aside on a plate. The chopsticks are gentle on the leaves and avoid puncturing the leaves.
This meal was easy to prepare and had the right kind of warmth for a cool fall evening. We bought the tilapia from Costco, which is not the best place to buy, but is the cheapest. Tilapia is listed as a sustainable seafood if farmed in the US. Try your local health food store or coop for best results. We bought the tomatoes from our local farmer’s market, and they are some of the last of the season as frost is hitting areas of Vermont pretty hard. This recipe is from Charmaine Solomon’s The Complete Asian Cookbook, which is a great compilation of recipe’s from Asia, organized by country. This is in the Sri Lanka section.
- 1 pound of fish steaks (e.g. US farmed tilapia)
- 1 t. ground turmeric
- 1 t salt
- oil to fry fish
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 t. freshly chopped ginger
- 1 medium tomato chopped roughly
- 2 T oil
- 1 T curry powder
- 1 t chili powder (I fried chili flakes in oil and then removed the flakes to prevent over spicing)
- salt to taste
- 1 can coconut milk
- Green onions for garnish
If serving with rice, be sure to start before preparing this dish. We served it with brown rice. Wash and dry fish with paper towels. Rub turmeric and salt over steaks and cut into bite sized pieces. Heat oil in a frying pan and fry fish until golden brown on both sides. Drain.
Put onion, garlic, ginger and tomato in electric blender and blend to a smooth paste.
Heat oil in a saucepan and fry the blended mixture for a few minutes (if using chili flakes, fry these and remove flakes before adding mixture). Add the curry and chilli powders and about a teaspoon of salt, the coconut milk, and bring to a boil, stirring. Simmer for a few minutes, add the fish and simmer a little longer, taking care not to overcook the fish. Serve with rice and other desired dishes (we chose salad). I added green onions for garnish just before serving.
My friend Chris recommended this recipe from the Food Network. I used Daiya Cheese from the Missoula Food Coop in place of the cheeses in the recipe. Instead of cherry tomatoes for the sauce (which was SUPER good), I used a can of diced tomatoes. I bought some arugula in the discount bin and used this instead of the spinach, which added a bit of spice!