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Creating good karma with food

With the devastating scenes being broadcast around the world, of the conflict in Ukraine, it’s nice to see how many people on social media are using their platform as a force for good.

Cooking may seem like a small way to contribute to a huge issue, but as Maya Angelou says; “Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.”

Want to get involved, but not sure what to cook? We will publish a series of tasty traditional Ukrainian dishes to try.

Golubtsi – Stuffed cabbage rolls

Cabbage rolls are filled with minced meat and rice. Either bake in the oven or stew in a pan.

  • Preparation Time: 10 min
  • Cooking Time: 35 mins
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Serves 4


  • 10-12 spring or savoy cabbage leaves – the outer green ones are best – washed well
  • 200g cooked basmati rice
  • 1 medium onion – finely chopped
  • Small handful of toasted pine nuts
  • 1 tablespoon of finely chopped preserved lemon peel
  • Handful of chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • Tablespoon of thyme leaves
  • 1 egg – beaten
  • Sea salt
  • Black pepper
  • Sumac
  • Olive oil
  • 50g butter


  1. Place the cabbage leaves in a large pot of boiling salted water over medium high heat. Do this in batches if needs be. Cook for around 2 minutes, just enough for them to become workable but still retain their vibrant green colour and a little bit. Cut out any central stalks.

2. Transfer the blanched leaves to a large bowl of cold or iced water to cool. Drain the leaves and gently pat dry with a kitchen towel.

3. Place a frying pan over a medium-high heat with a drizzle of olive oil and add the chopped onion. Turn down the heat slightly and cook for around 3-4 minutes until starting to soften.

4. Season lightly with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper and add the chopped up preserved lemon. Cook for a further 5 minutes until the onion has turned translucent and the preserved lemon has softened and become fragrant. Transfer to a bowl and leave to cool.

5. In a large bowl mix together the cooked rice, onion and preserved lemon, toasted pine nuts, thyme leaves, chopped parsley and beaten egg.

6. Season with a pinch of sea salt, few cracks of black pepper and a teaspoon of sumac.

7. Make the rolls by placing a heaped tablespoon or two of the rice filling in the middle of a cabbage leaf. Fold in all the sides so that you get a nice compact –  slightly oblong dumpling. Arrange the cabbage rolls seam side down in a frying pan or skillet on medium-high. Add butter to the pan along with around 120ml of water. Bring to a simmer and then reduce the heat to medium, cover the pot and leave to steam for around 15 to 20 minutes.

Recipe provided by B-well Foods www.bwellfoods.co.za

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