Italian Regional Recipes Secondi Piatti: Meat, Fish, Eggs, Cheese

Savoy Cabbage Rolls Stuffed with Mortadella and Minced Pork

Savoy Cabbage, Verza or Cavolo Verza in Italian, also known in Italy as Cavolo di Milano or Cavolo di Savoia), is a variety of cabbage, but unlike this one it has wrinkled leaves with prominent veins.

Savoy cabbage is great for making rolls to be stuffed with minced Mortadella and you’ll have a hearty nutritious meal served.

Savoy cabbage is a very low-calorie and a very satiating vegetable, can also be eaten raw as long as it is cut very thin, then mixed with other salads with the difference that its flavour is a bit strong.

It is cultivated mainly in the central-northern regions of Italy, particularly widespread is the production in the Canavese area in Piedmont, which has a traditional Savoy cabbage festival that takes place in November.

Its use in cooking is widespread in a large part of Europe and also in many North-Central Italian regions, particularly in Lombardy and Piedmont, since savoy cabbage loves the cold climate that is certainly not lacking in these regions. Savoy cabbage is excellent for the preparation of primi piatti such as soups and also combined with pasta, especially in Valtellina – in the mountainous area of Lombardy – it is used for the preparation of Pizzoccheri, a type of pasta made with buckwheat flour similar to tagliatelle. In secondi piatti it is often combined with pork and minced meat.

Serves: 6 | Preparation time: 20 mins | Cooking time: 30 mins

  • Savoy cabbage: 1
  • Finest Mortadella Bologna slices: 150 g
  • Pork minced meat: 250 g
  • Eggs: 1
  • Parmigiano cheese, grated: 3 tbsp
  • Thyme, fresh: 2 sprigs
  • Nutmeg: a pinch
  • Extra virgin olive oil: to taste
  • Salt: to taste


Preheat the oven to 200°C.

Remove the outer leaves, about 15. Bring a pot of salted water to boil, blanch savoy cabbage leaves for 5 mins. Drain them and delicately dry them up with kitchen paper. Set aside.

Mince finely Mortadella Bologna. Add it in a bowl along with pork minced meat, thyme, egg, grated Parmigiano, a pinch of nutmeg and a pinch of salt, mix them.

Fill each leaf with the mixture, wrap the leaf around the filling in the shape of a roll.

Tip: if you don’t have any toothpicks to close savoy cabbage rolls, place them stick to each other side by side on the baking tray, make sure that the closing point of them is facing down.

Drizzle with some olive oil, bake to 200°C for 20 minutes.

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