Dolmas (Stuffed Grape Leaves)

Photo: Stuffed Grape Leaves
This tasty Greek classic is a little time-consuming but yields a substantial amount of pupus for you to share at your next party or eat throughout the week.
40-42 Dolmas
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil + more for garnish
  • 1 cup finely diced onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup finely chopped mushrooms
  • 1½ cups long-grain white rice, rinsed
  • Warm water
  • 1 (16-ounce) jar grape leaves
  • 3 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 Tablespoons zante currants
  • 3 Tablespoons pine nuts
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin
  1. Heat oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add onion and garlic and sauté until onions are tender, about 2-3 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook until browned, about 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add rice and cook for a minute. Add just enough warm water to barely cover rice.
  4. Cover with a lid and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 8-10 minutes or until rice is half way cooked.
  5. While rice is cooking, remove grape leaves from jar and rinse under warm water. Separate leaves, trim off stems and set aside.
  6. Once rice is finished, remove from heat and allow to cool slightly, about 5-7 minutes.
  7. Add tomato paste, zante currants, pine nuts, cinnamon, cumin, fresh mint, lemon juice, salt and pepper to rice. Mix well to combine.
  8. Once rice is cool enough to handle, place one grape leaf on work surface, veiny side up. Place 1 Tablespoon rice mixture in the center of the leaf. Gently roll the back of the leaf over the filling, fold in each side and continue to roll away from you. Repeat until all of rice mixture is used.
  9. Place a steamer basket in a large pot. Pour vegetable broth in pot and add just enough water to have liquid right below steamer basket.
  10. Place dolmas in steamer basket, stacking them on top of each other as needed. Cover and simmer on low for 40-45 minutes or until rice is cooked.
  11. Carefully remove dolmas and let cool. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and fresh lemon juice. Enjoy!