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Dolmades (Stuffed Grape Leaves)

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Ingredients

1 jar grapevine leaves (1 pint)

1 ½ pounds ground beef

2 ½ teaspoons salt

Pepper to taste

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 onions, grated

1 cup long-grained rice

Juice of 1 ½ lemons

½ cup chopped fresh parsley

¼ cup chopped fresh dill

¼ cup chopped fresh mint

4 tablespoons butter, melted

2 cups beef or chicken broth

¼ - ½ cup lemon juice

Directions

  1. Rinse leaves in cold water. Let stand in warm water or simmer for 10 minutes until soft.
  2. Combine beef, salt, pepper, oil, onions, rice, lemon juice, parsley, dill, and mint. If necessary add ¾ cup water to make a soft and loose mixture.
  3. Place 1 teaspoon filling in center of each leaf—ribbed side—and shape into a narrow roll. May be frozen at this point.
  4. Line a deep saucepan with leaves. Arrange rolls—dolmades—on top in layers. Pour on butter, broth, and lemon juice and cover with an inverted plate. Simmer for 45 minutes or until rice is tender.

Notes: May substitute 1 pound ground beef and ½ pound ground pork for all beef. For oven baking, place rolls in a deep baking dish. Barely cover with broth and butter. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until rice is tender.

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