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Mediterranean Couscous Cabbage Rolls

  • 40 m
  • 40 m
EatingWell Test Kitchen
“We love the subtle flavor of cinnamon with fresh mint in these vegetarian cabbage rolls stuffed with couscous, olives and feta cheese. Don't worry if your cabbage leaves tear a little when you pull them off the head; they will wrap up just fine. As a precaution you can cook a couple extra leaves and roll two partly overlapping if needed. Serve with roasted butternut squash tossed with olive oil, cinnamon and garlic. To double this recipe, use 2 large skillets and prepare one 4-serving recipe in each. ”

Ingredients

    • 4¼ cups water, divided
    • 8 large Savoy or green cabbage leaves
    • ¾ teaspoon salt, divided
    • 1 cup whole-wheat couscous
    • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    • 4 cloves garlic, minced
    • 4 cups chopped plum tomatoes
    • 2 teaspoons red-wine vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon sugar
    • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • ⅓ cup crumbled feta cheese
    • 3 tablespoons chopped Kalamata olives
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint, plus more for garnish

Directions

  • 1 Bring 2½ cups water to a boil in a large skillet. Add cabbage leaves, cover, reduce heat to medium-high and simmer until softened, about 5 minutes.
  • 2 Bring 1½ cups water and ¼ teaspoon salt to a boil in a small saucepan. Stir in couscous, cover and remove from the heat. Let stand for at least 5 minutes.
  • 3 Transfer the cabbage leaves to a clean work surface to cool. Discard the water and dry the pan.
  • 4 Heat oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring often, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, vinegar, sugar, cinnamon, the remaining ½ teaspoon salt and the remaining ¼ cup water. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes are mostly broken down, 8 to 10 minutes.
  • 5 Meanwhile stir feta, olives and 2 tablespoons mint into the couscous. Mound about ½ cup of the couscous mixture at the stem end of each cabbage leaf. Roll into a bundle, tucking in the sides.
  • 6 When the tomato sauce is ready, add the cabbage rolls seam-side down. Cover and cook until the rolls are hot all the way through and the cabbage is very tender, 5 to 8 minutes. Serve the cabbage rolls topped with the sauce. Garnish with mint, if desired.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 5; cool sauce; refrigerate sauce and cabbage rolls separately for up to 8 hours. Reheat the sauce before finishing with Step 6.
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