Monday, March 12, 2012

Meatless Monday: Grapes Leaves Stuffed with Herbed Rice (recipe, pareve)

This is a great recipe to help Ashkenazim use up the rice in their pantry before Passover, or a great Passover recipe for my Sephardic Friends.  Also a great side dish or appetizer for any other time in the year!

Grape Leaves Stuffed with Herbed Rice P Yield: 36-40 Stuffed Grape Leaves
The rice, flavored with cinnamon and allspice and then mixed with the Turkish trilogy of parsley, mint and dill is delicious on its own.  Rolled in grape leaves, each bite is a treat and a trip to exotic lands.
1 bottle preserved grape leaves
3 tablespoons + 2/3 cup olive oil
1 large onion- peeled and minced
3 large garlic cloves-peeled and minced
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon allspice
3 teaspoons sugar
1 cup Basmati rice-rinsed
1 cup each:  finely chopped-parsley, dill, mint
Salt and pepper
1 cup water
Juice of 1 large lemon
2 Dutch ovens
Baking parchment
Baking pellets
  1. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in Dutch oven over medium flame. Add minced onion and garlic and sauté until they are very soft. Stir in cinnamon, allspice and sugar. Mix well. Stir in rice. Pour in just enough water to cover the rice-about 2 cups. Bring to a boil. Cover pot and reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer 10-15 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed.  Taste. The rice should have a bite. Stir in all the herbs. Taste again. Season with salt and pepper. Let rice cool.
  2. While rice is cooling, drain grape leaves and place them in a mixing bowl. Cover with very hot water. Let them soak about 15 minutes before gently separating them with two forks. Drain leaves and then soak them in cold water for 3-4 minutes. Drain leaves completely. Cut off any stems.
  3. Spread grape leaves out on a flat surface. Take a scant tablespoon of rice stuffing and lightly shape it into a log. Place it toward the stem end. Fold the bottom of the leaf over the rice and then fold the sides in. Roll grape leaf tightly so that all the rice is enclosed. Place stuffed leaf in Dutch oven. Repeat process until all the leaves are stuffed. Make sure you pack them as tightly as possible in the pot.
  4. Mix 2/3 cup olive oil with one cup water, sugar and lemon juice. Pour over stuffed grape leaves. The liquid should come up to half of the top layer. Cover the top of grape leaves with a piece of baking parchment.  Cover Dutch oven and simmer 45 minutes. Let grape leaves cool in the pan before arranging them on a platter and serving them with sliced lemon.  You can also cool them completely and freeze them with waxed paper between the layers. Defrost completely before steaming them just to heat them through.

No comments:

Post a Comment