Places of interest07 March 2021

Lenten sarmale with nuts and raisins - a delicious and healthy recipe, as it is prepared at the monastery

Sarmalele, whether with or without meat, are always welcome on the table of any Romanian household, even during fasting

Lenten sarmale with nuts and raisins

Lenten sarmale with nuts and raisins

This special recipe was also prepared by my mother, who had learned about it from a monastery, where the nuns always prepared it for Lent.

Ingredients needed for the filling: 2 large onions, 2 carrots, 300 grams of round grain rice, 300 grams of walnut kernels, 200 grams of raisins, a bunch of green leaves (dill, parsley), thyme (2 teaspoons), 300 ml of broth, 100 ml of oil. You also need, of course, pickled cabbage leaves (you can get the necessary leaves from 2-3 large cabbages). Fresh cabbage can also be used. It shall be cleaned, cut the spine and put it in boiling water in which 1 tablespoon of salt and 3 tablespoons of vinegar are added. Leave the cabbage in boiling water until it softens, remove it from the bowl and peel the leaves one by one, spread cabbage leaves on a trencher and cut them to the desired size.

Preparation of the filling: Chop the onion and grate the carrot. The walnut is soaked in water, drained and passed through the grinding machine. Fry the onion in a pan until it becomes tender, add the carrot, mix, then add the chopped walnuts. Mix everything well until well blended and temper for 2 minutes. Add the broth, and finally add the raisins and turn off the heat. Pour the composition into a bowl and wait for it to cool. Add salt and pepper to taste, but keep in mind that sauerkraut has enough salt. At the same time, add the green leaves and mix everything well.

Spread the cabbage leaves well and cut depending on how big you want the sarmale. Roll the filled leaves and place the sarmale in the pot in which they will be boiled (preferably a clay pot). Place a layer of chopped cabbage on the bottom of the pot. Place a layer of chopped cabbage on top, pour broth over it and then fill the bowl with enough water to cover the content.

Put the pot to boil on the stove, or put it in the oven. In about an hour, the sarmale should be cooked and just right to eat. They have a special taste and can be eaten both hot and cold, as an appetizer.

If you start making this recipe once, I guarantee you will want to repeat this experience.        

Elena Radu

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