- 8 to 10 large leaves Savoy cabbage or pan di zucchero
For the Risotto
- 4 cups chicken broth or water
- ¼ cup California Olive Ranch extra virgin olive oil, divided
- ½ cup finely chopped onion
- 1 cup Arborio, carnaroli or other medium grain white rice
- ¾ cup white wine
- ½ cup plus 2 Tbsp. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- ½ tsp. grated lemon zest
- ½ tsp. chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 2/3 cup broken walnuts
- 3 cups Roasted Tomato Sauce (recipe below)
Fill large pot water and heat to boil. Stack leaves and plunge all at once into the boiling water, turning with tongs to make sure they are submerged. Boil 2 to 3 minutes or until limp and tender. (If using Savoy cabbage, it may take a minute or two longer.) Use tongs to lift the leaves from the water. Place in a colander and let drain while making the risotto.
Place broth in a saucepan, heat to a gentle boil or simmer. Keep the broth hot over low heat.
Heat 2 Tbsp. of olive oil in a 10" deep skillet or sauté pan. When hot, add onion and cook, stirring, over med-low heat, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add rice and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Add the wine and boil, stirring, until it is absorbed by the rice.
Add hot broth ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly until absorbed before adding additional broth in ½ to 1 cup additions until the mixture is creamy and the rice is tender with a slight resistance to the bite, about 20 minutes.
Stir ½ cup of the cheese, the remaining 2 Tbsp. olive oil, lemon zest and thyme. Taste and add a sprinkling of salt, if necessary. Remove from the heat.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spread the walnuts on a sheet pan and toast in the oven 10 minutes.
Blot cabbage leaves dry with a paper towel and spread out on a work surface. If using Savoy cabbage, you will want to remove the thick lower part of the stem by making a V cut removing it and then overlapping the cut portions of the leaf.
Add a spoonful (about 1/3 cup) of the hot risotto to the lower half of each leaf. Sprinkle the risotto with about 1 Tbsp. of the toasted walnuts. Fold up the bottom or stem end of the leaf and then fold in the sides. Loosely roll the leaf over the risotto.
Spoon half of the tomato sauce in the bottom of the dish. Arrange the cabbage rolls snugly in the pan (an oval gratin dish works well). Spoon the remaining tomato sauce over the top.
Sprinkle with the remaining Parmigiano-Reggiano. Cover with foil and bake until the cabbage is tender, 25 to 30 minutes. Uncover and bake until bubbly and cheese begins to brown, about 10 minutes.
Oven Roasted Tomato Sauce
Oven roasting helps to concentrate typically dull flavored winter tomatoes. When I’m too impatient to wait for tomato season, I sometimes buy the medium-sized tomatoes sold on the vine. Their flavor is acceptable and the sauce is delicious.
- 2 ½ pounds ripe tomatoes, cut into ½ inch wedges
- 1 large basil leaf, torn (optional)
- ¼ cup California Olive Ranch extra virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped
- ½ tsp. salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Spread the tomatoes on a large heavy rimmed sheet pan. Add basil, if available. Drizzle with olive oil. Place the garlic near the center of the pan. Sprinkle with salt.
Roast, stirring often with a flat edges spatula, scraping the tomatoes browning near the edges toward the center and moving the steaming tomatoes in the center to the edges, until the tomatoes are shriveled and the juices have thickened, about 45 minutes. Let cool.
Scrape the tomatoes into the bowl of a food processor. Add about ½ cup water to the pan and using edge of a spatula scrap up the dried bits from the pan and add to the food processor. Process until the sauce is smooth. Taste and add a grinding of black pepper and a pinch more salt, if necessary. Makes about 2 ½ cups.
Recipe courtesy of Marie Simmons