October 29, 2010

Varza calita/ Romanian slow roasted cabbage stew

(Please scroll down for English version)

Varza calita... de obicei se facea cu varza murata, si nu pot sa spun ca era una din favoritele mele. Cand am inceput sa o fac eu, cu varza proaspata, cu putina smantana deasupra si un ardei iute langa, nu numai ca ne place, ne place foarte mult, in special sotului.

Se poate face cu carnati, coaste afumate sau fara carne, de post. Eu am folosit de data asta niste carnati proaspeti romanesti (trandafiri).

Varza calita este o alta mancare intr-o oala (cum ar zice americanii) numai potrivita pentru vremea rece. Varza se impaca foarte bine cu mararul, dar se poate folosi si patrunjel, sau chiar amandoua.


1 carnat proaspat taiat in bucati (se poate folosi carnat proaspat polonez)
3-4 linguri de ulei
1 ceapa mai mare tocata
1 morcov tocat
2 tulpini de telina tocata
1/2 ardei gras tocat
1/2 lingurita chimen macinat (optional)
1/2 lingurita boia afumata (optional)
1 varza medie tocata
2 linguri pasta de rosii
2 foi de dafin
1 lingurita cimbru sau oregano uscat
3-4 linguri marar tocat
Sare si piper dupa gust

Se incinge uleiul intr-o cratita, si se prajesc carnatii, intorcandu-se pe toate partile, pana se rumenesc. Se scot si se dau deoparte.

In uleiul ramas se adauga ceapa si se caleste 2-3 minute. Se adauga chimenul si boiaua (daca folositi) si se calesc 1 minut. Se adauga morcovul, ardeiul si telina si se calesc si ele cateva minute. Se incepe sa se adauge varza, cate o mana odata, calindu-se si adaugandu-se mai multa. Se stinge cu o cana de apa, si se caleste incet, pana cand toata varza este adaugata.

Daca vi se pare ca este prea multa varza, nu va ingrijorati. Varza va scadea foarte mult si se va reduce la jumatate.

Se adauga foile de dafin si se condimenteaza cu sare si piper. Se adauga cimbrul si pasta de rosii si se caleste pe foc, mestecandu-se din cand in cand, pana cand varza este patrunsa (cam 20-25 minute), fara sa se adauge multa apa (se va folosi maxim 1 cana jumate de apa).

Intre timp se incinge cuptorul la 180 grade Celsius (350 Fahrenheit).
Se pun carnatii inapoi in cratita si se ingroapa putin in varza (se verifica de sare si piper).

Se baga in cuptorul incins pentru aproape o ora, cand tot lichidul s-a evaporat si se rumeneste deasupra.

Se serveste cu marar si smantana. Nu uitati de niste paine proaspata. Si daca va place condimentat, serviti cu un ardei iute.

Sa aveti pofta ca varza e gata!

Slow roasted cabbage… it was usually made with sauerkraut, and I can’t tell that it was one of my favorites. But, when I start cooking it with fresh cabbage, and served it with some sour cream and a hot pepper on the side, not only we like it, we love it, specially my husband.

It can be made with sausages, smoked ribs, or vegetarian style, without meat. I used this time some fresh Romanian sausages (they are called “roses”; I don’t really know how they got this name).

Slow roasted cabbage it’s another “one pot meal”, very good for the cold season. The cabbage goes along very good with dill, but parsley can be used instead, or both, parsley and dill.


1 fresh sausage cut in 3 inch pieces (polish sausage works as well)
3-4 tbsp sunflower or olive oil
1 large onion chopped
1 carrot chopped
2 celery sticks chopped
½ red bell pepper chopped
½ tsp ground cumin (optional)
½ tsp smoked paprika (optional)
1 medium cabbage shredded
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 bay leafs
1 tsp dried oregano
3-4 tbsp chopped fresh dill
Salt and pepper after taste

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or a pot that can be placed in the oven. Fry the sausages, turning on all sides, until they’re golden brown. Remove and set aside.

In the pot add the onion and sauté for 2-3 minutes until translucent. Add the cumin and paprika (if using) and let bloom for a minute. Add the carrot, celery and bell pepper and sauté for several minutes. Start adding the cabbage, a handful at a time, sautéing after each addition. Add a cup of water and deglaze the pan and sauté until all cabbage is added.

If you feel like it’s too much cabbage, don’t worry, it will shrink down to a half.

Add the bay leafs and season with salt and pepper. Add the oregano and tomato paste and cook over medium heat, stirring once in a while, until the cabbage is soft (about 20 minutes). Don’t add more water; maximum 1 and a half cups of water should be used.

Meanwhile preheat the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Return the sausages in the pot, burying them in the cabbage (and check for salt and pepper). Place in the preheated oven and cook for about an hour and all the liquid evaporated. The top and the sides will look caramelized, but not burnt.

Serve with dill and sour cream on top, and don’t forget some good crusty bread. If you like a little heat, have some chili on the side.



Carolyn said...

Thanks for posting an english translation, because I would love to make this, it looks delicious!

Carolyn said...

Thanks for posting an english translation, because I would love to make this, it looks delicious!

Mihaela said...

Thank you Carolyn for visiting. The cabbage stew is really good, and it's worth to give it a try:)

Ligia said...

Oh ya baby..this is real food!! And so delicious..I had some of it...makes your tummy very happy!!!:-)

Mihaela said...

Ligia, I'm so glad your tummy is happy, I can't wait to make it happy again :)

Ellie said...

Vai de mine, dar ce bine arata varza cu carnati!! Cred ca mai provocat so fac si eu incurand:)


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