Sunday Supper: Smoky, Spicy Cabbage Rolls

Sunday Supper

Cooking projects for people who'd like nothing more than to spend a sunday afternoon surrounded by the wonderful aromas of the kitchen.

Editor's note: Each Saturday afternoon we bring you a Sunday Supper recipe. Why on Saturday? So you have time to shop and prepare for tomorrow.


Smoky and warming, these beef and rice-filled cabbage rolls are perfect winter weather fare. [Photograph: Jennifer Olvera]

I've never had an affinity for stuffed cabbage. It's not that I have a problem with it, really; it just never drew me in. That is, until I encountered Smitten Kitchen's version, which is simply amazing. And it's something I go back to time and time again.

I've tweaked the recipe a bit, adding roasted red peppers, garlic and pimentón, which lends a smoky edge and lending a depth of flavor I prefer the spicy version (picante), but use sweet (dulce) if you prefer. It's available in well-stocked grocery stores and from purveyors like Penzys Spices.

And while the original recipe cooks on the stovetop, I prefer the oven, where the cabbage packets go to work flavoring the sauce.

Note: These rolls can be assembled ahead. Just place them in the refrigerator and pull them out 30 minutes before you're ready to cook them. They also freeze beautifully.

About the author: Jennifer Olvera is a veteran food and travel writer and author of "Food Lovers' Guide to Chicago." Follow her on Twitter @olverajennifer.