I just sort of invented are tried out this recipe last night and oh man.. It was good. I am eating some leftovers of the same meal this afternoon as I write this post. Mmm Mmm tasty!
This is easy enough to make after work one evening for supper, but I often make it on a weekend and freeze it in smaller portions (I am only cooking for two people so a whole casserole of this size will not get eaten in one sitting, but if you are cooking for a bigger family and want some left over to freeze it would be worth doubling the recipe)

Also if you pay close attention to your ingredients, this can actually be a gluten-free recipe as well.

You will need:
2 lbs of ground meat – personally I used moose in my recipe, however I know that not everyone likes or has access to fresh delicious game, so you could use lean ground beef, ground turkey, etc.
1 can of diced stewed tomatoes (the one I like to use has cracked black pepper & garlic but plain is ok too)
1 fresh diced tomato
1/2 cup corn kernels (fresh, canned, frozen, are all good)
1/2 cup diced mushrooms
1 head of cabbage, shredded into bite-sized pieces
1/2 an onion, diced
2 tbsp cream cheese (optional – herb & garlic cream cheese is my preference, and for this recipe I actually used some unripened herbie cheese from Little Qualicum Cheeseworks)
1 tbsp sesame oil (optional)
1/3 cup Worcestershire Sauce (Lea & Perrins being the ultimate best brand for this)
salt & pepper (I used smoked Sea Salt from VI Salt Co. but if you can’t get your hands on this, plain salt will do)
2 cloves garlic, minced
sprinkle of oregano, parsley, and basil
2 cups brown and/or wild rice
2 cups shredded cheese (I used sharp cheddar, but use whatever you have or whatever you think will be tasty – it is my opinion that you can never really go wrong when it comes to cheese)

In a LARGE saucepan or cast iron pan, add sesame oil, canned tomatoes, cream cheese, garlic, herbs & spices, salt & pepper, onion, Worcestershire sauce, and diced tomato, and bring to a low boil. Reduce heat slightly and add ground meat, and continue stirring it in the sauce mixture until it is completely browned, about 8-10 minutes.
In a separate pot, bring water to a boil, add rice, cover, and reduce to simmer. This will need to simmer for about 30 mins.
In you sauce mixture, you may now add the corn and mushrooms. Lower the heat to a minimum and stir the mixture well. Cover it and let it sit while you go on to the next step, which is to take some lasagna pans (I used all Pyrex baking dishes, one med sized lasagna pan, one small lasagna pan, and two medium sized round pans to make several smaller meals and one big meal out of this, but you can do it however you like) and layer the cabbage across the bottom. (you are sort of using the cabbage as you would lasagna noodles).
So you layer it like so: cabbage, then rice, then meat, then cabbage, then meat, then cheese on top.
Bake it in the oven at 350 degrees for 35 minutes if you are using a few smaller pans like I did, or 45 minutes if it is just one big pan. To check if it is done, take a fork and pierce the cabbage – if it is nice and soft, then you can remove it from the over. Also the juices will probably be boiling in the pan by the time it is ready. Be careful you don’t burn the delicious cheesy top! Remove the casserole and let it sit for 15 minutes to set.
Serve with a nice leafy salad, some steamed broccoli, or anything else you think may go well with it. This is a very filling meal. It also tastes great with a little dollop or sour cream and a bit of Frank’s Red Hot sauce on it. Definitely adding this to my trusty cookbook.
As an alternate tip, if you have kids who really aren’t keen on vegetables, you could pulse all the vegetables except the cabbage in a food processor until they are of a sauce like consistency, however I would recommend using only 1/2 a can of stewed tomatoes in this case as it would make the meat mixture a lot more liquid-y.
So there you go, give it a try guys! Let me know how you liked it in the comments section!

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