Sarma – traditional Serbian meal

As soon as winter comes, all Serbian house-wifes have a new recipe for the menu: sarma – spicy sour cabbage leaves stuffed with ground beef and rice, cooked in the oven or on the stove, in Serbia traditionally spiced with home made smoked bacon or other smoked meat. Taste you don`t wanna miss!

Because it if of strong flavor and very spice, it is not eaten in summer. We are giving You the recipe, you will have no regrets if you try it.

  • 20 small sour cabbage leaves
  • 450g minced beef
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 chopped carrot
  • 50g rice
  • salt, pepper, chilly
  • oil, flour, bunch of parsley
  • 4-5 slices of smoked ham or bacon
  1. First of all wash cabbage and remove the hard piece of stem in the bottom of the leaf. Be carefull and try not to make hole. Leave a side.
  2. Fry chopped onion in oil until golden brown. Add splash of water and cook until liquid evaporates and onion are soften, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add chopped carrot, add beef, stir good and let it cook for about 15 minutes. Stir occasionally with wooden spoon to break the beef lumps.
  4. Add rice. It’s very important to stir constantly when you add it. Cook for another 5 minutes and remove from heat.
  5. Spice with salt, pepper, chilly and parsley.
  6. Fill the cabbage. Place a spoon of beef in the middle of bottom the leaf. Fold from left then fold from right. Roll the cabbage keeping fingers firmly on the side.
  7. Place rolls in oiled baking dish. Sprinkle with chilly and parsley. Place bacon slices in the middle. Pour 1 cup of water in.
  8. Bake it covered for 1 hour in the heated oven (250 degrees C), then reduce temperature to 200 degrees C and bake for another 1 hour.
  9. In the end, fry shortly flour with little oil in small sauce pan, stirring constantly and adding chilly gradually. In the same time remove baking dish from the oven, pour 2/3 cup of water and mixture of flour, oil and chilly. Put uncovered dish in the oven for another 15 minutes.
  10. Serve hot!
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