I love Greek food and I love lamb. Yesterday I made dolmades with some of the ground lamb from
my leg of lamb. They really do need to chill so we did not have them until today. They were so good! We are truly being spoiled this week!
Every time I opened the fridge I would sneak one! There are as many recipes for this dish as there are cooks but here is mine. I like a lot of rice because I like the way it plumps up and fills out the grape leaves. By the way - I use jasmine rice for most everything because I just think it tastes better. The only exceptions would be sushi or paella.
|Simmer until water is absorbed.
Snip off tough stems.
Use about 1 1/2 teaspoons for each grapevine leaf.
Line a large skillet with the leftover leaves. Place the filled leaves in the skillet.
Place an inverted plate over the leaves. Add water to just cover the stuffed leaves, bring to a simmer and cover and cook on low for 1 and 1/4 hours.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup onion finely diced
1/2 cup scallions finely chopped
1 tablespoon crushed garlic
1/2 pound ground lamb
1 cup jasmine rice
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh dill
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parley
2 tablespoons pine nuts
2 tablespoons lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
1 one pound jar grapevine leaves
For serving: Fresh lemons, good fruity olive oil
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Saute the onion and scallions until the onion is translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for another minute. Add the lamb, rice, dill, parsley, pine nuts and lemon juice. Add 1 cup of water. Season well with salt and pepper. Take into account that these are going to expand some more so the seasoning will be diluted. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes until the water is absorbed. The rice will not be cooked at this point.
Let the rice mixture cool. Meanwhile remove the grapevine leaves to a colander and rinse well to remove the brine.
Lay the leaves out on a board and clip off the tough stem. Fill each leaf with about 1 1/2 teaspoons of the rice mixture. Start rolling, then fold in the sides and continue rolling to make a cylinder.
Take any leaves that remain and line the bottom of a large skillet with them. Arrange the stuffed grapevine leaves on top. Place an inverted plate over top. Add enough water to just cover the leaves (about 1 1/2 cups). Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer one hour and 15 minutes. You may need to add a little more water after 50 to 60 minutes to keep the bottom of the pan moist.
Thoroughly chill the dolmades. When ready to serve place them on a plate. Drizzle with a good fruity olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice.