This recipe is basically unstuffed stuffed cabbage or unballed “meatballs with gingersnap gravy” (I kid you not.) It’s a descendant of kraut rulle, kohl rouladen, fleischklosse, and kraut spiess. All its Eastern European great-grandparents have had their influence on it. It definitely has plenty of cabbage and some tomato, and it’s a good way to cram in a lot of veggies. And for further veggie coverage, I eat it over spaghetti squash, or a bit of sweet potato, or zucchini “noodles”. If I’m not needing the super veggie boost, I might have it over a bit of white rice, or stuffed in a spring roll (rice) wrapper. I also douse mine with fish sauce, a little vinegar, and sambal oelek (a chili sauce) but my husband isn’t as big a fan of that deliciousness so I leave it out of the pot.
We always get at least 4 to 6 meals out of this recipe. Double it for some great bachelor chow to freeze for later. I often chop the cabbage, carrots, and apple in my food processor especially if I make a double batch – it’s a lot of cabbage. The carrot and applesauce give it a sweet nod to its heritage but leave either or both out and add another tomato if you want it less sweet.
Paleo Bachelor Chow
• 1 pound ground beef
• 2 TB oil/fat (olive oil, coconut oil, lard, or a mix)
• 1/2 medium onion, chopped
• 3 cups shredded cabbage (about half of a medium to large head; if you coarsely chop by hand use 4 cups or a bit more)
• 1/2 of a green pepper, chopped (frozen is fine, about half cup.)
• 4 large tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped or half a 6 oz. can tomato paste
• 1 apple, grated or 1/2 cup applesauce (unsweetened, of course)
• 1 large carrot, grated
• 2 tablespoons lemon juice
• 2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
• 1 tablespoon prepared mustard
• 1/8 tsp cinnamon
• 1/8 tsp ginger
• a pinch of ground cloves
• 1 teaspoon salt (optional)
• Dash pepper
Condiments as desired
• fish sauce
• chili sauce
• whole fat yogurt
• rice vinegar
1. In a large skillet or pot, warm your oil or fat for a bit over low to medium-low heat, then add chopped onion and let cook for about 5 minutes or until the onion gets mostly translucent.
2. Add in the beef, breaking it up by hand as you put it in or by chopping up a bit with your spatula. Add the green pepper too. Cook and stir it until all of the beef is looking done, doesn’t have to be browned.
3. Add the cabbage, tomatoes (unless you’re using paste, then wait on that), carrot, and apple (or applesauce) to the pot. Cook for about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste if using it instead of tomatoes, and stir in lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, spices, salt and pepper.
4. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until cabbage is tender. Eat it.
(I published this to Cron-O-Meter as just “Bachelor Chow” – please let me know if you can or can’t find it, thanks!)