Dolmas: Stuffed Grape Leaves w/Rice, Mint, Pine Nuts…

This Greek appetizer, often referred to as Dolmas, keeps well for a week or so. Around the holidays, bring them to potlucks, or serve when company drops in. They also come in handy as part of the meal on days when there’s no time to prepare anything, and are gluten-free–another plus!

For those whose gardens are graced with grape vines, the grape leaves themselves can be easily processed at home. Collect 36 or so large grape leaves during the summer months, wash the leaves, and roll up piles of twelve. Three rolls of twelve will fit in one quart jar. Just add a mixture of 3 c. water and 1 TBS. salt; weight the leaves down if necessary to keep them covered in brine. Let sit at room temperature for 3 days, then cover and refrigerate.

Makes approx. 30 pieces.

Dolmas- stuffed grape leaves with rice, dried fruit, mint

INGREDIENTS

  • 30 grape leaves (approx. one small jar, net dry weight 8 oz.)
  • 2 c. brown rice
  • 4 c. water
  • 1/3 c. dried apricots
  • 1/2 c. raisins
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 c. fresh parsley
  • 4 sprigs fresh spearmint (1/2 c. or so)
  • 1 green apple, peeled and cored
  • 1/2 of a medium onion
  • 1 c. olive oil
  • 2 tsp. salt

PREPARATION

Earlier in day, or night before, bring to boil, then let simmer on low for 45 min. or so with the lid on: > 2 c. brown rice > 4 c. water

Refrigerate the cooked rice without stirring it, until cooled. Process the following in processor, or hand chop: > 1/3 c. dried apricots

To chopped apricots, also add and process/chop: > 1/2 c. raisins

Last of all, add to chopped dried fruits in processor, pulsing until finely chopped, but not pureed (or, again, hand chop): > 3 garlic cloves > 1/2 c. fresh parsley > 4 sprigs fresh spearmint > 1 green apple, peeled and cored > 1/2 of a medium onion

Finally, add all the above to the cooked, cooled rice, along with: > 1 c. olive oil > 2 tsp. salt

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