Pigs in a Blanket (Sarma)

Sarma

“…the following is a rendition of Gramma Anna’s Sarma recipe which she tried to teach me to make. Like her Povetica recipe, so was her Sarma- all memorized with pioneer measurements- a handful of this or that- a pinch or a dash of something else- always turning out delicious (perfect) dish.”
An excerpt from the family history book my Grandma wrote. Gramma Anna would have been my great grandma. She came from Yugoslavia (the old country), I don’t think she ever learned English. My grandpa grew up speaking Croatian and learned English once he started school.

I never knew Gramma Anna, but if her cooking and baking was as good as Grandma, it was great! Her Povetica is something that we still make for all special occasions and holidays. It’s this great nut roll with walnuts, honey and cinnamon. There are other kinds but this is the one we make the most. I’ve heard Gramma Anna’s recipe used baking powder rather than yeast, but Grandma uses yeast so for now I do too.

PoveticaAs for the Sarma (Pigs in a Blanket) which is what I was really excited to tell you about. Grandma made  this for our family Christmas dinner this year and it was wonderful!.I admit the first time I heard Pigs in a Blanket I thought of corn dogs (which I find kinda disgusting). Sarma is a recipe Gramma Anna brought with her from the Old Country. Its ground ham and beef with rice in a ball wrapped in a cabbage leaf and cooked in sauerkraut. Yum! Ok maybe it’s not for everyone, but I defiantly recommend giving it a try!

Sarma
Sarma
Walnut Povetica
Print Recipe
Servings
1 12x18 pan
Servings
1 12x18 pan
Walnut Povetica
Print Recipe
Servings
1 12x18 pan
Servings
1 12x18 pan
Ingredients
  • 6 tbsp Yeast
  • 1/4 cup Warm Water
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup Butter melted
  • 3 each Eggs
  • 1/4 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 2 cup Warm Milk.
  • 8 cup Flour
  • 3 1/2 lbs Ground Walnuts
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 cup Honey
  • 2 can Evaporated Milk I use buttermilk
  • 1 cup Butter melted
  • 2 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 3 1/2 lbs Ground Walnuts
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 cup Honey
  • 2 can Evaporated Milk I use buttermilk
  • 1 cup Butter melted
  • 2 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 tsp Cinnamon
Servings: 12x18 pan
Instructions
  1. Mix the yeast, water and sugar in a bowl and set aside.
  2. In another bowl combine the second sugar, salt, butter, eggs, vegetable oil and milk. Mix well.
  3. Slowly add the first bowl to the second.
  4. Gradually add the flour while stirring.
  5. This will make a medium soft dough. Knead by hand for 10-15 minutes.
  6. Let this rise until it doubled in a greased bowl covered with a flour sack towel.
  7. FILLING:
  8. Mix all of this together and cook over low heat for about 10 ten minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  9. ASSEMBLY:
  10. Roll the dough very thin on a floured surface. (Grandma rolls the dough to almost paper thin so the edges of the dough hang over this sides of a dinner table). Carefully spread the filling onto the dough.
  11. Combine 1 c sugar and enough cinnamon for a good mixture and sprinkle over the filling.
  12. Drop by the tsp. some soft butter here and there. Then roll the dough up like cinnamon rolls. Roll this very tightly! Swirl the roll into you pan. DONT LET THIS RISE!! Cover with tin foil.
  13. Bake at 325 for 1 1/2 hour. If it needs to brown more, remove the foil and bake for another few minutes.
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Sarma (Pigs in a Blanket)
Print Recipe
Sarma (Pigs in a Blanket)
Print Recipe
Ingredients
  • 2 lb ground Beef
  • 2 1/2 -3 lb ground Ham or pork
  • 3/4 c White Rice uncooked (I use brown rice)
  • 1 tsp garlic
  • 2 tsp Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 c Water
  • 1/4 c Diced Onion
  • 1 each Cabbage head
  • 1 qt Sauerkraut or more if you like
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Mix everything together except the cabbage and kraut and shape into balls a little smaller than a tennis ball and wrap in a wilted cabbage leaf. Set aside.
  2. Wilt the cabbage leaves in a pot of steaming but not boiling water.
  3. Remove the leaves from the water and save the water.
  4. Lay the wilted leaves flat.
  5. Put a layer of kraut in the bottom of the kettle, layer with leaf wrapped meatballs and cover with the remaining sauerkraut.
  6. Add enough cabbage water to cover the kraut. Sprinkle with additional paprika.
  7. Simmer for 1 1/2 hours or until done.
  8. Then Serve!
Recipe Notes

* Unwrapped meat balls will freeze well for later.

I know it doesn't sound like much but it's great winter comfort food. I like it with a good squash or mashed potatoes

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