Vegetarian Stuffed Grape Leaves
While making stuffed grape leaves is not a quick dinner idea, it also won’t take you all day. I just recently learned the process from start to finish, and it is so exciting! Here is a quick how to, so that you can make them yourself! They are light and delicious.
Ingredients (Makes about 90 stuffed grape leaves):
1 cup rice
2 cups chopped parsley
6 roma tomatoes
salt and pepper
Step 1: Prepare the stuffing
The stuffing is really easy. Soak 1 cup of rice in warm water. Meanwhile, finely chop 6 roma tomatoes and about 2 cups of fresh flat leaf parsley. Put both in a bowl. To that add 1.5 teaspoons of salt, a few dashes of pepper, and 1/4 cup olive oil. By now about 15 minutes should have passed. Rinse your rice, drain the water and toss it in the bowl with all your other goodies. Mix well.
Step 2: Prepare your leaves
My auntie and cousin taught me this simple, straightforward method. Open a jar of grape leaves and rinse them a little bit. Place in a pot and cover with water. Bring the pot to a boil and simmer for about 3-5 minutes. Using tongs remove the grape leaves a bunch at a time and place in a colander. Rinse with cold water and squeeze well. Now you are ready to roll!
Step 3: Roll your leaves
Place a grape leave stem-side up on a cutting board. Cut off the little stem.
Place a small amount of the stuffing right above where the stem was. Put less than you think- remember the rice will expand a lot when cooked.
Fold the right side in to the center. Follow with the left.
Roll the leave up, tucking or folding the sides in as you go.
When you are done rolling them place them in a pot, being sure to lay them close to one another.
Step 4: Time to get cooking
Pour 2 cups of water for every one cup of rice over the pot. The top layer of grape leaves should be about halfway covered. Drizzle with a bit of olive oil. Cover the pot with a lid and turn heat to high. When the water starts to boil lower it to about medium and cook for 35 minutes. At that point squeeze tons of lemon over the whole pot. For this amount of leaves I would do about 1.5 juicy lemons. Cook another ten minutes, and taste. The leaves should not be bitter or too chewy, and the rice should be cooked.
And you’re done! I have eaten them up to 5 days later and they just get tastier and tastier. Special thanks to Razan and auntie for teaching me how to make these! PhillBoy and our special guest are going to just love them!
Now it is midnight and I must go off to bed! I just made our ring bearer pillow for our wedding (bad picture of something adorable. check our rhodeygirlandphillyboy.wordpress.com for some more bad pictures of it)! EEEeeeee!