24 March 2007

Dolmas Salad

Every Middle-Eastern country has its own variations of  rice-stuffed rolls, dolmas or dolmades. Lebanese cooks may use a little tomatoe in their recipes, but elsewhere it is more traditional not to overwhelm their subtle flavour with garlic, tomatoe, vinegar or other strong flavours. This salad has all the flavours of dolmades without all the work. You can use commercially prepared leaves, but even those will need to be blanched and chilled before use or they are too salty and strong-flavoured.

Photo was taken in Oia on the island of Santorini. Love the windmills!!

**Dolmas Salad**

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions (white and green parts only)
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1-1/2 cups long-grain rice
  • 2-1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 1 lemon, rinsed and quartered
1. In a 4 - 6 quart pan over medium heat, stir pine nuts and 1/4 cup green onions in oil until nuts brown and onions are limp, about 5 minutes.

2. Stir in rice, chicken broth, grape leaves and reserved 1/4 cup brine, lemon juice, raisins, and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender to bite, 30 - 35 minutes.

3. Fluff rice mixture with a fork, stir in parsley, dill, and remaining 1/4 cup green onions. Mound salad on a platter and garnish with lemon quarters if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Serves 4 - 6

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