Grandma comes from a different time, a time apparently, when eating raw meat was okay: she was born in 1913 and grew up with four older brothers who were all born in Lithuania -- she was the only one in the family born in the U.S. Needless to say, the majority of her cooking is Lithuanian, but it can really be lumped into the Eastern European category: stuffed cabbage, kugeli, kushlanah (I'm spelling phonetically here on the last one -- it's gelled brains of some sort and my mother and grandmother are the only people I know who eat it). It's not pretty, delicate food -- but it sure is hearty and tasty (well, except for the brains one).
Grandma's Stuffed Cabbage (gluten-free, dairy-free)
serves six people
2 1/2 lbs ground beef
1 head of cabbage
1 1/2 cups cooked rice
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 potatoes, cubed (any kind will do)
3 large carrots, cut into chunks
5 cups tomato sauce
Add the whole cabbage to a large pot of boiling water and cook until tender, about ten minutes. Be careful when taking the cabbage out and let cool another ten minutes before handling. Peel each leaf of cabbage off and set aside. Mis the rice with the beef in a bowl and season with salt and pepper (but please don't taste at this phase like Grandma).
Next, add about two tablespoons of meat per leaf of cooked cabbage and roll like a burrito. Place in a casserole dish, add the potatoes and carrots on top and cover well with tomato sauce. Cook for one hour at 350 degrees.
Although our recent batch wasn't "her best" she stated (but really, she says that about everything), she still ate like a good eatah.