I owe a lot to Balloon-Juice. It is an amazing community of people who listen, snark, commiserate and most importantly love animals. The ship is captained by John Cole, a big bear of a guy with a heart of gold who loves his Tunch, Lily and Rosie, all of who came to him as rescues, in one way or another.
Just this month, the team at B-J, headed by John, helped rescue and pay for the medical needs of a beautiful St. Bernard, named Garnet. Even better, when all was said and done, she was adopted by someone in the B-J family. I’ve lost count how many that makes this year. But a post will go up about an animal in need of a home and by the end of the day, someone in the B-J community has a new member of the family.
I am so happy to direct you to the Balloon Juice calendar. Not only is it beautiful, but it helps animals in need. The pets that appear on every page are all from the B-J community and EVERY DIME goes to help animals in need.
Makes a great gift. So help a puppy or kitty out and order yours today.
I am reposting this because John Cole had a birthday last week and his dad made him cabbage rolls again and everyone was asking for the recipe. Here it is. Originally published August of 2010:
I was catching up on my Balloon-Juice reading one afternoon, when blog host John Cole mentioned that his dad was making cabbage rolls that night for dinner. It so happens I’ve been looking for a good recipe for cabbage rolls for a while. I figured if it was served in the Cole household it must be good. John was kind enough to fulfill my request, so here is Dad Cole’s recipe:
Dad’s Cabbage Rolls
- 1 medium size head of cabbage
- (If you use Savoy cabbage, the cabbage will cook faster and the rolls are more delicate.)
- 1 pound ground beef mixed with ½ pound ground pork
- 1 small to medium onion, chopped small
- 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup uncooked rice
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh parsley, oregano, and basil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 eggs
- 1 to 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 large can of tomato sauce
- 2 tbsp parsley, oregano, and basil
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 beef bouillon cubes dissolved in a cup of hot water
- salt and pepper
- 1 small can of sauerkraut
Boil three quarts of water in a large pot. Cut the core out of the cabbage and remove each cabbage leave carefully. When the water is boiling, drop the cabbage leaves into the water. Leave for at least two minutes. Remove and cool in ice cold water. Drain and then use a pair of shears to remove the hard ridge that is the spine of leaf. Set leaves aside on a paper towel to drain.
In a bowl, mix the beef and pork with the eggs, seasonings, rice, and tomato paste as though you were making a meatloaf.
Take a leaf, place a large tablespoon of the meat mixture at the core end of the leaf. Roll once, then fold each side over the mixture and complete rolling the filling to the end of the leaf.
Place rolls in a crock pot or baking casserole. As you layer them, spread the sauerkraut and any leaves not used after (chopped into fine strips). Mix sauce ingredients and pour over the rolls. Make certain there is enough liquid to cover the rolls. If using a crock pot, select the time. They can be cooked slowly over a 6-8 hour period, or within 4 hours. If baking, set the oven at 350 and bake for at least 1 ½ hours or until a fork can easily pierce a top roll. If more liquid is needed to keep the rolls covered, mix a small can of sauce with an equal amount water and add during the cooking time.
Serve with a sprinkle of freshly grated aged Parmesan.
I can’t wait to have an occasion to try these out. And I’ll let you in on a little secret. I only hang out at Balloon-Juice because I have a huge crush on this guy:
John, I had to go back 4 months to find a good picture of Tunch, which means one thing, MORE TUNCH please.
I think I might start something new. I did a few over the Christmas holidays and now I think I’ll emulate some of my favorite bloggers and start posting some favorite music.
This one is from John Cole over at Balloon-Juice. How have I never heard of this wonderful singer before?
It reminds me of one of my favorite shows Memphis Beat, RIP.