Stuffed Grape leaves with Meat and Rice
• 1 large jar grape leaves (60-90 leaves)
• 2 pounds of lean ground beef
• 1 cup of rice (short-grain), uncooked
• 2 large onions, finely chopped
• 2 TBS of olive oil
• 2 TBS fresh herbs, chopped (dill, mint or parsley)
• 3 Lemons (Juice)
• Pepper to taste
• Salt to taste
PREPARING THE LEAVES:
Rinse leaves in warm water. Remove leaves and cover with cold water. Drain the leaves in a colander.
PREPARING THE FILLING:
Saute the onion in olive oil until soft, add the rice and sauté. Combine all ingredients and mix with your hands to evenly incorporate.
ROLLING THE FILLING IN THE LEAVES:
Place a leaf with the shiny side down. Place a rounded teaspoon of filling near the stem of leaf. Fold leaf over the filling, bottom then sides, and roll up the leaf leaving a little room for the filling to expand.
COOKING THE DOLMADES:
Place dolmades in a pot, seam side down, closely together. Add enough water to cover, add lemon juice and weight down with an inverted plate to prevent unraveling. Bring slowly to a full boil, Reduce heat and simmer gently for 1 hour.