An all-time family favorite! I can never make enough rolls! HAHA! Teamed with my Southern Hot Water Cornbread recipe and baby green lima beans, I cannot go wrong with this meal!!! Do NOT ruin the great flavor of cabbage and meat with tomato sauce or tomato soup! The natural taste of the sliced tomato comes up and adds to the flavor of the cabbage rolls! And the thyme just enhances the aroma and taste of all 3 main ingredients! Try it my way and tell me you don't love it! I dare you! LOL
Remove outer leaves of cabbage and place whole head in salted boiling water to looser leaves. Remove leaves to large bowl or cutting board to cool as you loosen them from the head. Reserve liquid in pot.
Mix raw meat, onion, salt, pepper, rice and thyme well. Make into balls and roll each ball into a cabbage leaf. I make from 24 to 30 rolls.
Spray large baking dish with nonstick spray. Slice one tomato over bottom. Layer cabbage rolls on top. Slice other tomato on top and sprinkle with salt, pepper & thyme.
Chop remaining head of cabbage and layer on top. Pour about 1 1/2 to 2 cups water of reserved boiling liquid into dish. (Dish should be half full of water.) Sprinkle again with salt, pepper & thyme
Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 20 minutes to 1 hour and 30 minutes. Enjoy!