Stuffed vine leaves Dolmathakia
This dish, called dolmathakia, and is a popular dish in the Mediterranean diet. In theory, the rolls should be prepared with the young vine leaves freshly picked, but are also fine those ready for use. The same filling can be used to stuff vegetables such as zucchini or tomatoes in the oven.
1 (450 g) jar of 120-150 vines leaves the equivalent of fresh leaves packed in brine
4 fl oz. (115 ml) olive oil
2 2 large, finely chopped onions,
2,5 cups (450 g) zucchini, grated
1/2 medium sized eggplant, peeled and grated
2 grated medium carrots,
4 peeled, seeded and chopped, tomatoes,
10,5 oz. (300 g) long grain rice,
1 bunch of parsley, finely chopped
1 teaspoon black pepper
Juice of 3 lemons
1 teaspoon salt
Boil a large pot of water and add the juice of half a lemon and 1 teaspoon of salt.
Unroll the leaves carefully without separating them. It may happen that the outer leaves of the can be damaged or be torn as the handle. Let them aside for later use them. Turn off the heat and dip the leaves in the pot for 3 minutes. Remove them carefully, put them in a bowl and cover with cold water. Contents, drain in a colander.
In a large saucepan, heat the oil and fry the onions for 3 minutes.
Add eggplant, carrots, zucchini and cook over low heat for 10 minutes.
Add the tomatoes into small pieces and cook for 4 - 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for 15 minutes.
Add the rice, parsley, remaining salt and pepper, and mix well.
Carefully take the grape leaf and place them with the shiny side down on the work surface. Cut off the stem and discard. Pour 1 teaspoon of the filling on the leaf at the point where the stem joins the leaf.
Close the sides of stuffing grape leaves, and then fold the sheet completely. The bundle must be compact, not too tight, because the filling swells during cooking. Repeat until you have finished the dough.
Put a heatproof dish or a thick layer of baking paper folded at the bottom of a heavy pot and deep, making sure it fits snugly.
Put the rolls of vine leaves, one beside the other, without bringing them closer too, with the closure downwards so that they do not opened during cooking.
Place them in layers until they will stand in the pot (2-3 layers are perfect, but no more than 4). Close the top of the pot the remaining leaves. Add water and put the lid. Bring to a boil, add the remaining lemon juice, reduce the heat and simmer for 50-70 minutes.
Check the cooking if the rice is cooked, is over. Otherwise, cook for 10 minutes and checked again. The cooking times depend both on the type of pot is from the stove. Serve the rolls hot or cold.