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Bulgarian Sarmi are leaves of various kinds, stuffed with a mixture based on either meat or rice. Certain regions use lettuce or vine leaves and the most common variation is pickled cabbage leaves.

If you are preparing this out of Bulgaria, then use any kind of cabbage leaves!


(Serves 6)
1 kg pork mince
1 whole cabbage
1 large onion
1 cup of rice
Fresh parsley
Chilli powder


Finely chop the onion and fry in a tablespoon of oil until softened. Stir in a teaspoon of paprika and remove from the heat.

Stir in the meat, rice, a handful of finely chopped parsley and a pinch of chilli powder. Salt and pepper to taste.

Cover with warm salted water and simmer until the water has been absorbed by the rice.

Select around 40-50 large cabbage leaves and dip them in boiling, salted water for around a minute.

Place one soup spoon of the pork and rice mixture in the centre of each leaf.

Roll the leaf tightly and arrange them in a saucepan (see photograph).

Pour over a cup and a half of warm water (or use the water that you dipped the cabbage leaves in earlier) and a drizzle of oil, cover and simmer on a low heat for two hours.

Serve hot with vegetables of your choice and a glass of Mavrud ... delicious!