Wednesday, February 18, 2009


In keeping with my last post-

For those of you who have emailed/commented me asking What are they??

Here goes-I hope I do this post correct & do justice to what is a national food to some, I am sure you will let me know if I don't. Anyway this is how my family like them- except Emerald that is.(Please read last post)

Stuffed Vine Leaves



Admittedly the picture is of canned ones they do not look as good as the fresh ones as they pack them in oil. But yummy they are!!

Dolmades are little parcels of rice, mincemeat, sultanas or pine nuts rolled into vine leaves. I serve them with a dipping sauce mostly yogurt, garlic & cucumber but sometimes Baba Ganouzh. Personally I have never done any with mincemeat but I have tasted them & they are quite nice. I prefer to cook other things with my mincemeat.

To use fresh grape vines leaves pick early in the morning, wash well sprinkle each leaf with salt put them in a bowl with a weight on top. Next morning rinse leaves & blanch lightly. Drain & cool.


Go to your local deli and buy a packet of preserved ones.

I no longer have a grape vine but if you have, please try doing your own as they are far superior.
Also please use fresh herbs as it is really much nicer.

In a fry pan gently fry 1 large onion that you have finely chopped along with some garlic(to your taste) in a little Olive oil.

Add 1 cup of rice and approx 3 tablespoons of Pine nuts(I add more, I love them but I don't use sultanas as I don't like them in dolmades) stir for a minute or so.

Add 3 tablespoons of parsley & 2 tablespoons each of dill & mint, salt & pepper & 2 tablespoons of sultanas.

Add 1 cup of chicken stock-you may need to add a little water.

Cook gently until liquid is absorbed. (Remember gently is the word)

To make the rolls up. Place the vine leaves smooth side down. Place approx 1 Tablespoon at base of leaf. Fold the stem end over the filling, then fold each side over and roll up into a little parcel.

Repeat until all you filling is used up.

Line a large pot with your remaining leaves and pack the rolls in on top of leaves. Sprinkle the juice of 1 lemon & a little olive oil over the top of rolls.Put a layer of vine leaves over the top of each layer of rolls & one on top when you finish. Add a cup of water and simmer lightly with a tight fitting lid for about an hour.(gentle that is) Do not go and watch your fav soapie on TV as you will boil the pot dry, yes that means you may need to add a little more water. And yes I am speaking from personal experience about the TV.

Allow to cool & serve with yogurt sauce & lemon.
They may seem like a bit of mucking around the first time but you will find it dead easy after that.


Cassie said...

Oh Caroline your recipe sounds so good. We usually get dolmades at the Greek Fest at the Orthodox church here in Phoenix. The daughter used to like the canned ones when she was a pre-teen. I need to find someone with a grapevine now!! Thx. for the recipe.

Lucy said...

Hi Caroline, Thank you for popping over to my blog and adding your self to follow. I have done the same. And thank you for welcomeing me to your blog world. Will visit again soon.

Donna said...

Sounds interesting! My Mother loved mincemeat...Thanks for explaining this sweetie!!hughugs

Shelley said...

I am 50% lebanese and we call ours "grape leaves" with a different spin - but my FAVORITE dish of all time! I'll have to share out recipe sometime! :)

Caroline said...

Shellmo I would love you to share your recipe with us. Thanks for letting us know.

Lesley (Notesfrommydays) said...

haha i did laugh at the dont go and watch tv bit - i have burnt many a slice of toast doing that !!!
sounds yummy though!
Lesley x

Unknown said...

HI!!!!!!!! Just popped in to say HI!!!!!!!!! Am now back in blogland and finding time to post almost everyday - be late today as I ahve to get some sewing done on the quilt BEFORE i post photos. Start working every day next week but get SATURDAYS off! and finish at 2.55 so I can get the little boys from the bus. So coffee will ahve to be weekend or later in the afternoon maybe a Friday?? Early dinner in D????


The Vintage Rose said...

Yum I love Dolmades. I will have to grow a grapevine. What does Emerald not get about the taste? or is it the texture I wonder?


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