Little Greek Gems in the Heart of Wine County

Gather some grape leaves and make these delicacies

Posted by bbahara61 on September 15, 2019

The Grape Leaf Is the Thing

If at all possible, pick your own grape leaves.

Attributes of a good Dolmada Grape Leaf:
Not exposed to direct sunlight for more than 2 hours a day
Small veins

Blanch until tender.

If not possible to pick your own grape leaves or a friends, use the jarred grape leaves at the grocery store. As they are jarred in a brine, these leaves will result in a stronger, saltier flavor. Adjust for salt accordingly.

Dolmadas - Lamb

Makes approximately 2 doz

1 lb ground veal
2 lb ground lamb
1 large onion, grated
8 TB Italian parsley, finely chopped
5 TB fresh dill, finely chopped
¾ cup medium grain rice, uncooked
2/3 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
1 ½ lbs fresh grape leaves, blanched
4 TB butter, cut into pieces
1 ½ cups chicken stock, warmed
2 eggs
5 TB fresh lemon juice

MAKE the Dolmadas

In a large bowl combine veal, lamb, onion, parsley, dill, rice and half the oil, season with salt and pepper.
Thoroughly combine the mixture
Lay grape leaves on a flat surface, shiny side down
Place a TB of filling in each grape leaf and roll as a burrito (flap up sides and then roll)
Pack the dolmades tightly, seam side down, into a heavy bottom dutch oven or large saucepan
Pour in remaining oil, dot with butter
Invert a heat proof plate over the dolmades, inside the pan, which will keep the dolmades from coming apart
Carefully pour in the warmed chicken stock
Over medium heat, simmer 40 minutes or until half the liquid is absorbed and parcels are tender

MAKE the Egg Lemon Sauce

Remove from heat and remove plate, tilt pan to ladle out 1 cup of pan juices
Transfer to blender, let cool slightly to warm
Slowly blend in lemon juice and eggs
Poor juice mixture over dolmades
Let stand, entirely off heat, 15 minutes
Sprinkle with pepper and serve