Sarmale Simmered in Octoberfest Beer (Stuffed Cabbage Rolls)

Everyone has their death row meal and this is the exact meal I want to be served.  If you are unfamiliar with the concept of a death row meal it is very simple.  It is the last meal you would be served before being executed.  I know grisly thing to think about but lot freaking better than thinking about what you did to get put on death row.

It is also one of those awesome fall time dishes because Oktoberfest beers are everywhere along with good cabbage from the farmer’s market or if you are lucky the garden.

Hell Oktoberfest beers are one of the major reasons I look forward to fall.  When I start seeing them on the shelves I know it is time to start enjoying the fire pit.  It also symbolizes the start of heavier beers for winter.

If you have never had one I definitely suggest you run out to your favorite liquor store and grab a mixer six of a couple different varieties.  Make sure you find a couple old school German style not just the smaller micro-brew Oktoberfest.

This dish definitely has some effort involved but trust me it is well worth it.  It also freezes very well which is good considering it makes enough to feed a small army.

Step one is going to be make the cabbage happy.

Sarmale Simmered in Octoberfest Beer

You will need:

  • 1 head of cabbage
  • cup of fresh dill
  • 2 TB fresh savory
  • 2 teaspoon whole peppercorns

To make the cabbage happy:

  • Core the cabbage
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil and kill the heat
  • Add the cabbage, dill, savory, and peppercorns into the water and make sure the cabbage is submerged. You might need to set a plate with a couple cans on top to keep it under the water.
  • Cover and let it sit overnight.

The next step is taking the awesome flavored cabbage and turning it into stuffed awesomeness.

For this step you will need:

  • Cabbage from step 1 (duh)
  • 2 TB fresh savory
  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 2 lb ground beef
  • 1 onion diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 cup of rice uncooked
  • 1.5 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 lb sauerkraut
  • 3 TB fresh dill
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 cup Oktoberfest beer
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • Couple lbs of smoked ham hocks and if you are adventurous a couple pig’s feet.

Yes I know I am asking a lot of you but stick around it gets awesome….

Steps for success:

  • Take the cabbage out of the water and let it drain for a little bit
  • Combine the pork, beef, rice, onion, and garlic in mixing bowl and mix thoroughly.
  • Peel off a cabbage leaf
  • Take a handful of the meat and rice mixture and put in the middle of the cabbage leaf
  • Roll it (think burrito rolling) and place in a large roasting pan.
  • Repeat (if you have slave labor errr kids it makes this step easier.  I took the easy way and “faked” a trip to the store leaving Heather to roll them).
  • Shove the pig’s feet (seriously grow up and go get some they add awesomeness to this dish) and ham hocks between the cabbage rolls.
  • Mix the rest of the ingredients in a bowl.
  • Pour this bowl over the cabbage rolls.
  • Shove it in a 375 degree for about four hours.
Serve and enjoy the fruits of your labor.



Cooked up by Jeff