Tuesday, September 15, 2015

June 20: Yaprak Dolmasi (Yaprak Sarmasi) - Dolma (Stuffed Grape Leaves)

Prep. Time: 30 min.
Cooking Time: 20-30 min
10 Servings


  • 2 cups Calrose rice or your favorite type of rice
  • 2 big onions
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup pine nut
  • 1/2 cup dried currant
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 2 tsp Italian parsley (finely chopped)
  • 2 tsp dried mint or fresh mint leaves (finely chopped)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 3 cups hot water
  • 250 gr grape leaves
  • 1/2 lemon juice and/or 1/2 lemon slices

  1. In 1/4 cup olive oil in 12-inch skillet, saute onion, stirring until golden - 5 minutes.When they turn translucent, add the pine nuts and sauté for 5 more minutes.
  2. Add rice and stir constantly for 5-10 minutes until the rice is translucent.
  3. Add the spices (mint, cinnamon, salt, black pepper, cumin, dried currants, sugar and allspice) and chopped parsley.
  4. After another quick stir, add 1 cup of boiling water and simmer on low medium heat for 10-15 minutes until all the liquid is absorbed by the rice mixture.
  5. Take off heat and let cool.
  6. Meanwhile, separate grape leaves. Rinse well in cold water to wash away any brine. Dry well on paper towels. Use imperfect leaves for layering evenly in the bottom of the skillet.
  7. Lay leaves, shiny side down, on flat surface.Put 1 tablespoon mixture in center of each leaf; fold sides over filling; roll up, starting from narrow end. Do not roll too tightly; rice needs room to expand. Fill skillet with closely fitted layers of stuffed leaves.
  8. Lay all your dolmas side by side and tuck very tightly.
  9. Transfer the remaining 1/4 cups of olive oil, juice of half a lemon and 2 cups of boiling water, cover with a plate upside down (so that the dolmas don’t move around in boiling water) and bring to a boil.
  10. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until all the water is absorbed (roughly 45-60 minutes).
  11. Transfer to your serving dish and let cool.
Afiyet olsun! 
(Have a great meal!)

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