Grape Leaves With Rice and Pine Nut Filling

“In 'The Big Book of Appetizers' by Meredith Deeds and Carla Snyder”
2hrs 45mins
4 dozen

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Separate the grape leaves, and rinse them under cold running water.
  2. Soak the leaves in cold water while the rice cooks and cools.
  3. Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat and add 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil.
  4. When the oil is hot, add in the onion and saute until it is soft.
  5. Add in pine nuts, raw rice, and currants; cook, stirring for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Add in parsley, chives, tarragon, fennel greens, lemon zest, salt, cardamom, cinnamon, and 2 cups of chicken stock and bring to a simmer; do not stir.
  7. Cover, decrease heat, and let the rice cook until it is tender and the liquid has been absorbed, about 20 minutes.
  8. Remove the rice from the heat, fluff it with a fork, and transfer it to a large bowl to cool.
  9. Drain the grape leaves and lay them out on a towel to dry.
  10. Working with one leaf at a time, place a rounded teaspoonful (don't overstuff) of the rice filling at the base of the leaf where it connects to the stem.
  11. Cover the filling with the tail end of the leaf and roll it.
  12. Fold the sides of the leaf to the center to enclose the filling, and roll up the package.
  13. Finish with the seam on the bottom; repeat to roll the remaining grape leaves.
  14. Line the bottom of a 3-quart saucepan with the grape leaves that have ripped or torn.
  15. Place a layer of rolls in the pan, drizzle a little of the lemon juice on top, and lay a few grape leaves over them to cover.
  16. Continue to layer the rolls in the pan.
  17. Top with more ripped or torn grape leaves to cover.
  18. Pour the olive oil, remaining 3/4 cup chicken stock, and remaining lemon juice into pan, cover, and place the pan over medium heat.
  19. Braise for about 45 minutes at a bare simmer.
  20. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool until the rolls are easily handled.
  21. Arrange the grape leaves on a tray and garnish with sliced lemon.
  22. Serve warm or at room temperature.
  23. Make ahead: the stuffed grape leaves can be kept, covered and refrigerated for 3 days.

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