Wrapped in tender cabbage leaves and served with a savory sauce, these Tofu and Vegetable Cabbage Rolls are a perfect blend of simplicity and taste. Inspired by the classic Chinese steamed cabbage rolls, this dish offers a delightful mix of finely chopped vegetables and tofu, making it not only visually appealing but also a great low-carb option.
Step 1: Prepare the Filling
- Start with the Base: Heat a pan over medium heat. The key here is to get the temperature just right to sauté without burning.
- Sauté the Veggies: Add finely chopped carrots and spring onions to the pan. Stir them around for a bit until they soften and release their aromas. This is where the flavors start to build.
- Add Mushrooms: Introduce finely chopped mushrooms into the mix. Watch as they shrink and blend with the other veggies.
- Crumble in Tofu: Now, for the star of the filling – crumble in a block of firm tofu. It’s a fantastic meat substitute and absorbs the flavors beautifully.
- Mix in the Rice and Seasonings: Stir in cooked rice, which adds substance and texture. Follow this with a splash of rice vinegar and soy sauce for that umami and a hint of tanginess.
- Thicken with Corn Starch: Finally, sprinkle corn starch over the mixture. Stir well and cook for another 1-2 minutes. This not only thickens the filling but also binds everything together.
Step 2: Prepare the Cabbage Leaves
- Boil Water: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. You need enough water to submerge the cabbage leaves fully.
- Blanch the Leaves: Place Napa cabbage leaves in the boiling water. Blanch them for about 1 minute. They should be soft enough to roll without tearing.
- Drain and Dry: Take the leaves out, drain them, and gently pat them dry. Be careful as they are quite delicate when wet.
Step 3: Assemble the Rolls
- Add Filling to Leaves: Lay out a cabbage leaf on a flat surface. Spoon a portion of the filling onto the center of the leaf.
- Fold and Roll: Neatly fold the sides of the leaf over the filling, then roll it up from one end to the other. It should look like a small, stuffed parcel.
Step 4: Cook the Rolls
- Pan-Fry to Perfection: Heat a little oil in a pan. Place the rolls seam side down and pan-fry until they turn a lovely golden brown on both sides.
Step 5: Prepare the Sauce
- Mix It Up: In a bowl, combine soy sauce, chilli oil, Sriracha, and oyster sauce. Adjust the proportions to suit your taste. The sauce should be a harmonious blend of spicy, sweet, and savory.
Serve and Enjoy!
- Presentation is Key: Arrange the cooked cabbage rolls on a serving plate.
Drizzle with Sauce: Generously drizzle the sauce over the warm cabbage rolls. This adds an extra layer of flavor that complements the rolls beautifully.
Nappa Cabbage Rolls
- Large pan for sautéing
- Large pot for blanching cabbage
- Mixing bowls
For the Filling:
- 1 carrot finely chopped
- 3 spring onions finely sliced
- 4 mushrooms finely chopped
- 1 block of firm tofu crumbled
- 4 tablespoons cooked rice
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1-2 tablespoons corn starch
For the Rolls:
- 8-10 Napa cabbage leaves
For the Sauce:
- Soy sauce to taste
- Chilli oil to taste
- Sriracha sauce to taste
- Oyster sauce to taste
Prepare the Filling:
- In a pan over medium heat, sauté the carrot, spring onions, and mushrooms.
- Add the crumbled tofu and stir.
- Mix in the cooked rice, rice vinegar, and soy sauce.
- Sprinkle corn starch over the mixture, stir well, and cook for 1-2 minutes.
Prepare the Cabbage Leaves:
- Boil water in a large pot.
- Blanch the Napa cabbage leaves for 1 minute, then drain and pat dry.
Assemble the Rolls:
- Place a portion of the filling on each leaf.
- Fold and roll to encase the filling.
Cook the Rolls:
- Pan-fry the rolls until browned on both sides.
Prepare the Sauce:
- Mix soy sauce, chilli oil, Sriracha, and oyster sauce in a bowl.
- Drizzle the sauce over the warm cabbage rolls.
Adjust the spiciness of the sauce according to taste.
The rolls can be prepped in advance and pan-fried just before serving.
Perfect for meal prep as they reheat well.