Dolmades (Stuffed Grape Leaves)
Many of my after school snacks and dinners were eaten at the mall, when my parents were working late. My younger brother and I were free to roam the mall alone, and we spent many hours running through the place like it was our own house. The arcade was our playroom, the clothing stores our closet, and the food court was our kitchen. There was a Greek food stall in the food court, and my young self quickly made friends with its owners who encouraged me to try all of their various options. Not many eight-year-olds eat stuffed grape leaves, but they were my favorite. Back then I ate meat, now I don't. Back then my parents sold animals, now they are practically animal rights activists. Things change. My love of Dolmades did not.
I think my recipe is the bomb-dot-com, but if you're pressed for time, don't try it. This is a time-consuming activity to say the least. In a pinch, buy the ones in a jar from Trader Joe's. I also like the different varieties available at Whole Foods, but at about $5 for 4 pieces, that can get expensive. This entire recipe costs less than $10, and makes 25-30 pieces (depending on how many leaves are workable in your jar.) I'm excited to have these for lunch all week.
Greek Dolmades (Stuffed Grape Leaves)
Time needed: 2 hours
1 Jar Grape Leaves
1 Cup Brown Rice
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
1 Tsp. Sea Salt
1 Small Yellow Onion
2 Cloves Garlic
1 Cup Fresh Chopped Parsley
1/4 Cup Fresh Chopped Mint
1 Tbs. Tomato Paste
2 Cups No-Chicken Broth
2 Lemons, juiced
1 Can Chick Peas (Garbanzo Beans), rinsed and drained
2 Ripe Red Tomatoes
1 Tsp. Cumin
1/2 Tsp. Seasoned Salt
Rinse and drain the chick peas, and give them a rough chop. Add in two diced tomatoes.
Place on the stove and bring back to a boil and cook for an additional 15 minutes over a simmer.
Ideally, your finished product should look like this:
My new camera and I are still figuring each other out, so this is the only picture of my finished product I have:
I hope you all have a great Monday!