Stuffed Grape Leaves Recipe

Stuffed Grape Leaves Recipe
Staff Writer
Stuffed Grape Leaves
Maryse Chevriere
Stuffed Grape Leaves

I’ve been eating stuffed grape leaves by the can since I was a kid – my mom used to pack them in my lunchbox, much to the outspoken skepticism of my Fluffernutter-eating peers. The best part about making these yourself is there’s no way to just make a dozen or two. A jar of grape leaves contains about 40, so it’s dolma mass-production no matter how many people you’re feeding.

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Ingredients

  • 1 jar grape leaves in brine (about 40)
  • ¾ cup good quality olive oil, divided
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups cooked long-grain rice
  • 2 green onions, white and light green part only, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest
  • ½ cup pine nuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup fresh squeezed lemon juice

Directions

Unroll, drain, and rinse the grape leaves, then blanch in a large pot of salted, boiling water in batches of 10 for 2-3 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain in a colander.

In the meantime, heat ¼ cup of olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat and sauté the yellow onion until translucent, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add rice, green onion, mint, lemon zest, pine nuts and ¼ cup olive oil. Mix well and allow to come to room temperature, about 20 minutes.  

Assemble each one by laying a leaf flat on a cutting board with the ribs facing up (shiny side down) and the stem facing you. Add a heaping tablespoon of filling in the middle, then roll the stem end up over it, tuck in the edges, and continue rolling up until you’ve formed a seal.

Place the finished rolls, seam side down, in tight layers in a medium saucepan. Pour in remaining olive oil and lemon juice, then add boiling water to cover. Cover and simmer for one hour, then allow to cool completely before serving.

Grape Shopping Tip

Buying fruits in season when they are at the peak of their freshness make for great tasting food and can save you money.

Grape Cooking Tip

Don’t throw out your overripe fruit – instead blend into a smoothie or salad dressing, add to muffin batter, bake into a cobbler, or boil down with sugar and a little lemon juice to make jam.

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