Mostly, I’m reasonably methodical. My extensive reading, good lab skills, and somewhat less extensive experience has given me a sense of what is feasible and what probably is not worth trying. I measure the rice and water, but freely toss in the cumin and oregano by feel rather than teaspoons. (Or, when measuring for recipes, I toss it into a little bowl, and then into a measuring spoon.) It’s held up fairly well, for the most part*. I know when it matters, and when there is flexibility.

Last Thursday, however, I was really hungry. I did NOT measure the rice or water. Nor did I, like a sensible person, taste it when the rice cooker claimed it was cooked. Instead, I
tossed it directly into my steamed cabbage leaves with some dill, a spash of lemon juice, a little herb mustard, and a few scraps of smoked salmon. It wasn’t. Fortunately, I was assembling three but had only seasoned one before tasting. The other leaves were promptly emptied back in the pot with more water. On Friday, I actually measured so here’s an actual recipe.

I used a blend of approximately half wild rice and half short grain brown rice, but you could vary the proportion or even use a *gasp* commercial blend. I like the onion’s ability to cut the fattiness of the salmon quite a bit, but if you’re horrified by raw onion, use some garlic in the dressing or green scallion tops instead.

Cabbage Rolls with Wild Rice and Smoked Salmon

3 savoy cabbage leaves, from the outer larger layers
3/4 c cooked wild and brown rice blend, heated
2 t mustard
1 T lemon juice
1/2 t dried dill weed
Black pepper, to taste
2 oz smoked salmon (Wild Alaskan)
6-9 slivers sweet white onion

Remove cabbage leaves, preferably without tearing. Rinse well, and microwave for 1-2 minutes while dripping wet. Stir together the mustard, lemon juice, dill, and black pepper. Toss the dressing with hot rice. Scoop the rice evenly into the three leaves, and top with the onion and salmon. Roll, and enjoy with additional lemon or mustard if desired.

*Except in vegan baking.
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