The Cabbage Patch
I quickly reviewed the recipe and emailed her a few million questions about it, hoping that she'd say "oh, it'll be easier for me to make it for you. And an honor, to boot," but she was completely insensitive about that and just answered my questions. Polish people, what are you going to do?
So I put on a leotard and got to work.
Fortunately, I had some rice in the house already, in a container whose size suggested that I was directly responsible for the rice shortage worldwide.
I just had to get some meat and tomato sauce and cabbage.
Trip to the store, part one revealed that when I told the meat hacking guy that I needed 1 1/2 pounds of ground beef, half a pound of ground swine and quarter pound of ground veal, and gave him my blessing to put it all together, he would put it all together and charge me the price for the ground beef for everything. Now, normally this is ok with me if the ground beef is the cheapest of the three, but what if it isn't? What if they were having a special on Mexican swine and I could have gotten the whole thing for like $1? There was just absolutely no way that I could get to the bottom of this international math conundrum, so I didn't even try, but rest assured that this will bother me for the rest of my life.
Then, came the tomato sauce dilemma. In the future, food bloggers, I would appreciate it if all recipes had instructions like:
Go to the store, to aisle 3, and on the third shelf from the bottom, about three inches to the right, there's a can of tomato sauce. Buy it and take it to your leader.
Because in my store, there are ten million cans of tomato sauce. How can a mere mortal decide? Fortunately, Young Ladrinka was with me and said "Just take ANY ONE. Who cares?!" so I grabbed three different ones and we left.
Sadly, we left without the cabbage, which, and I'm no Julia Child, but appears to be an Ingredient of Importance in the stuffed cabbage preparation.
So I had to go back to the store and I hope that I don't have to spend a lot of time explaining how draining that is. Also, and feel free to try this out, if you go to a supermarket and the only thing you're buying is a head of cabbage, people will comment. "Ooh, a cabbage patch!" Yes, I am making a cabbage patch in the NYC apartment. But I don't want anyone to know, so I buy only one cabbage at a time, going to different stores for more single cabbage heads. Because I will build that cabbage patch if it's the last thing I do!
With the shopping taken care of, the rest of the preparations went smoothly. Well, except for the part where I didn't read the part of the recipe that the cabbage that is stuffed had to be in the oven for two hours, so that dinner was ready at approximately 2 a.m. Apparently, I thought that cabbage leaves, when wrapped around raw meat, had magical powers to cook the meat instantaneously. Which is why people really like cabbage patches.
Thanks, OHMommy, for broadening my culinary horizons!
It was super yummy (as a midnight snack).