50 Grape Leaves (about a small jar of grape leaves)
1 cup of long grain rice
1/3 cup of toasted pine nuts
1/3 cup of raisins (you can mix or substitute with diced dried apricots)
1 medium onion diced
1 grated tomato
2-3 table spoons of chopped mixed hers - parsley, dill and mint
5 tablespoons of olive oil
Juice from 2 lemons
Teaspoon of salt
2 cups of good thick Greek yogurt
2-3 tablespoons of lemon juice
1-2 minced garlic cloves
2 tablespoons of mixed chopped herbs (dill and mint)
2 tablespoons of good tangy olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 teaspoon of Sumac (optional)
In This Recipe
Sauté the onion in 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a bit of salt for 10 minutes.
Add the rice, salt and pepper and a cup of water. Bring to a boil and then cover and cook on low hit until all the liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes or so.
Take of the hit, put in a bowl and let it cool down.
When cooled add the pine nuts, raisins, 3 tablespoons of lemon juice, herbs and grated tomato. Mix well.
Stuff the leaves: Flatten a leaf on a board, inner side (stem side, it is the less shiny side) up. put 2 teaspoons (or so, depends on the size of the leaf) in the middle-bottom of the leaf. Take the bottom part of the leaf and wrap on top of the rice mixture. Then tuck-in the sides and keep rolling tightly to the top end part of the leaf until you get a small tightly wrapped log.
Arrange the leaves tightly around a medium pan. You can create more than one layer, once you filled one. It is better to put some leftover leaves on the bottom and between layers, but you can do without.
Add the rest of the lemon juice and oil. Add hot water to cover the layers of the stuffed leaves. Put on top a plate to keep the leaves submerged in the liquid.
Bring to a gentle boil and then lower the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes covered. Let it cool in the pot.
Drain the leftovers liquids if any by holding the plate to the leave will stay in place.
Serve warmish, room temperature or cold (I like warmish). Serve with yogurt sauce - mix yogurt with 2-3 tablespoons of lemon juice, mixed herbs, minced cloves of garlic, olive oil and salt and pepper. You can add a tablespoon for Sumac for a bit of color and sourness. Is the sauce is a bit too thick for you add a bit of milk or water.
Great also the next few days if kept in the fridge. So it is also a great make ahead.