The original recipe I used, made in a crockpot:


dolmas stuffed with lamb, rice, and almonds

            from: The Ultimate Rice Cooker Cookbook


This is a hearty version of the ever-popular stuffed grape leaves, made slightly sweet by the addition of raisins. We like to serve it with tart plain yogurt for balance. Because these dolmas are made with raw meat and rice, they are not steamed but cooked in water to cover.


YIELD: About 35 dolmas; serves 8 to 10 as an appetizer, 6 as a main dish



1 pound lean ground lamb

1/2 cup long-grain white rice    

1/4 cup minced onion       

1/2 cup dark raisins

1/2 cup slivered blanched almonds

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint leaves or 1 teaspoon dried mint leaves, crumbled      

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper



1 jar (8 to 10 ounces) preserved grape   Ieaves

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 cloves garlic         

2 to 3 sprigs fresh mint (optional)         

Lemon juice or cold plain yogurt, for serving


1. Make the filling: In a large bowl, gently blend the lamb, rice, onion, raisins, almonds, mint, salt, cinnamon, allspice, and pepper. You can do this with your            hands or with a fork or mixing spoon, but take care not to mash the meat. 

2. Remove the grape leaves from the jar and carefully unroll the stack. Gently rinse the grape leaves with cool water and allow them to drain. Cover the bottom of the pot with 1 or 2 grape leaves. This is a good use for any leaves that tore as you removed them from the jar.

3. Make the dolmas: To stuff the grape leaves, put 1 leaf on a plate, vein side up, stem end nearest you. Place about 1 tablespoon of filling on the center of the leaf and use your fingers to gently shape it into a little log, arranged horizontally across the leaf. Fold both sides of the leaf in over the filling, then roll up the leaf. Place the rolled leaf, seam side down, in the bottom of the cooker. Continue to stuff and roll leaves until you run out of filling. Arrange the dolmas in neat layers in the pot. Top with the olive oil, garlic, and mint springs, if using.

4. If needed, cover the dolmas with a small, heavy, heatproof plate to keep them from unrolling during the cooking. Add water , pouring around the plate to cover.  Add more water as necessary to keep the dolmas covered during the cooking time. Test for doneness, the dolmas should be tender; cook a bit longer if they are not.

5. When done, turn off the cooker and allow the leaves to cool somewhat in the liquid before removing them.

6. Serve the dolmas warm or at room temperature, with lemon juice or plain yogurt for dipping.






From: "Nicole Todaro" <>


If you're using the regular stuffing with rice and meat, well you can stuff

them with meat only   (ground beef mixed with parsley and onions or

you can use a meatloaf mixture).   When your dolmas are ready you arrange them

tightly on an oven proof-dish and lay on top some slices of tomatoes and

onions + 1/2 cup of lemon juice + 1/2 cup of Olive oil and cover well. Cook in

a moderate high oven for a 1/2 hour to 1 hr depending on the quantity.


You can do the same thing with white fish filet (maybe grouper) instead

of meat. It is delicious!




"jessica" <>


My name is Jessica and I am currently living in Corfu, Greece. (We used to

live in Izmir, Turkey for a few years...) Needless to say we've eaten a lot

of "dolmas"!  It's actually just about anything" vegetable stuffed altho

grape leaves are quite the frequent choice.  (they're everywhere! the vines

climb on the terrace!)


I'm including a few recipes I've used [- I have a CD-Rom one of my sons gave

me called Easy Chef One Million of the World's Best Recipes-] anyway it's

quite convenient for this sort of thing.  I've adapted them and included a

few of the adaptions.


Dolmas are just "stuffed things" so I also added a nice recipe for stuffed

zukes and peppers as well.   (I have had dolmas with ground turkey

substitued for the ground beef or ground lamb and it's quite good as well -

depends on how well seasoned you make it, i guess...)


(this one is "mine"...)



1 jar grape leaves or 25-30 fresh grape leaves

1 cube butter

1 lb. ground beef

1/2 c. rice

1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce

1 onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 c. broad leaf Italian parsley, chopped

1/4 c. lemon juice


Rinse grape leaves well in clear water. Mix, meat, tomato sauce, rice,

onion, garlic, parsley, salt and pepper together. Roll 1 1/2 tablespoons of

meat mixture in each leaf folding sides in as you roll. Pour lemon juice

over dolmas and add water to almost cover. Add the butter. (weigh down

dolmas) Cover pot, bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and gently simmer about 1




1 lb. hamburger

1/2 c. rice

1 sm. onion, grated

1/4 c. fresh broad leaf parsley chopped

1/4 c. fresh mint leaves chopped

Salt & pepper

1 egg

1 jar grape leaves (about 40)

2 c. water

2 tbsp. butter or margarine


Egg Lemon Sauce (see below)


  Rinse grape leaves well in clear water.  In a bowl mix the rice, onion,

parsley, mint and the egg (slightly beaten).  Salt and pepper to taste.  Add

the hamburger and mix well.  Upon the center of each grape leaf place a

teaspoon of the mixture.  Fold the side of the leaf in a roll up.  Place

each stuffed grape leaf side by side in a pot.  Add the water, salt to

taste, add the butter or margarine.  Cover the stuffed leaves with a plate

that fits snugly inside the pot.  Cover pot and simmer for 45 minutes.

Remove from oven.



 Beat 2 eggs until light and lemon colored.  Slowly stir in 3 tablespoons

lemon juice.  Then slowly add the broth from the pot, stirring constantly.

Make sure broth is hot but not boiling.  After thoroughly stirring broth,

pour egg lemon sauce over the grape leaves.  Reheat over very low heat until

sauce thickens slightly and becomes smooth.  Makes certain that sauce does

not boil; sauce will curdle if it does boil.  Serve immediately.



50 med. sized grape leaves (1 to 2 jars)

1 lb. very lean ground lamb (or beef)

16 oz. canned Italian plum tomatoes, crushed

1 c. raw long grain rice

1/2 c. olive oil

2 bunches scallions, chopped

3 c. loosely packed fresh mint leaves, chopped

Juice of two lemons


Drain grape leaves.  Separate and rinse leaves being careful not to tear and

set aside.  Combine lamb, crushed tomatoes, rice, olive oil, scallions and

mint.  Lay a grape leaf, vein side up in palm of left hand with stem

pointing towards chest.  Place 1 tablespoon mixture at base of leaf.  Fold

leaf sides over mixture and roll towards the end of your hand.  Place seam

side down into pot.  Continue until all leaves are filled.  Pour lemon juice

over dolmas and add water to almost cover.  Weigh down with small plate.

Cover pot, bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer 1 hour or until rice in

stuffing is cooked.



Canned Grape Leaves


1 to 1 1/2 lb. lean ground lamb

1 c. raw rice

1/2 c. olive oil

1 c. finely chopped onion

1/4 c. chopped parsley

1 tbsp. dill

1 tsp. allspice

2 cloves pressed garlic

1 lemon, juiced

Salt and pepper


2 c. chicken broth

2 lemons, juiced


Rinse canned grape leaves well; cut off stems about 1/4 inch vein.  Roll 1

1/2 tablespoons of meat mixture in each leaf folding sides in as you roll.

Place in a large pot close together; layered with grape leaves over each

tier; plate on top of last layer.  Add chicken stock and juice of 2 lemons

and simmer for 1 1/2 hours.  Remove from heat.  Cool 1 to 2 hours.  Serve

hot or cold with hollandaise if desired.


Dolmas (with zucchini instead of grape leaves)

6 zucchini, cut in halves

Garlic powder

1/2 lb. lean ground meat

1/4 c. rice, uncooked

2 tbsp. oil

1 med. onion, finely chopped

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. pepper

1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce

Oil to sprinkle


Scoop centers of zucchini (an apple corer or grapefruit spoon works well).

Chop up the centers and spread on bottom of baking dish. Sprinkle with

garlic powder.  Mix meat, rice, onion, salt and pepper together.  Stuff the

hollowed zucchini with the meat mixture and arrange them in the baking dish.

Pour tomato sauce and a little oil over the stuffed zucchini.  Cover and

bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Serves 8-12.

[also good with peppers.  Carefully cut top off peppers (save little top

"hat") and clean seeds and pith out of green, red and yellow peppers.  Stuff

with meat mixture and arrange them in the baking dish. Put their little

"hats" on.  Pour tomato sauce and a little oil over the peppers bake as with







try seasoned couscous (prepared) with minced red pepper and a handful of

pignoli nuts, with or without a few currants -- simmer rolled dolmas in a

covered pot in fresh or canned tomato sauce (dilute if you prefer) for about

an hour


If you are using just rice, parboil the rice for 10 minutes or so, that way the dolmas won't pop.


For a really savory Syrian taste, layer dolmas with dried apricots (sounds

strange, but it's delicious) and simmer for a while in a sauce made of prune

butter (I'm not kidding) and about half as much lemon juice.  this is good

with rice fillings, outrageous with beef or lamb.









Stuffed Grape Leaves


2 lbs chopped meat

1 C uncooked rice

cumin, mint, red & black pepper (use generous amounts of these spices)

plus a little allspice


jarred grape leaves, rinsed lightly


Roll them up, put them in the pot. (I make concentric circles, laying

them end to end with the long side along the outer edge of the pot, then

make another circle inside that ring, moving toward the center of the

pot. I usually end up with about 2 layers in a 6 qt pot.) Cover with

about 2/3 lemon juice to 1/3 water. Weigh down the rolls (I use a salad

plate with a small glass bowl over it - the plate pretty much covers the

rolls and the glass bowl prevents the plate from floating up.) Cook  on

medium about 1 1/2 hours.



I've had commercial (canned) grape leaves and they taste nothing at all

like this. My recipe is from a friend, who picked it up somewhere, etc,

so it's not "authentic" but I like it. Lots of the recipes I've seen call

for raisins and pine nuts.







"Adina M. Overbee" <>



This is an appetizer or first course recipe.


Stuff each grape leaf with a 1"x2" slice of fresh salmon.  Brush with

olive oil and bake 15 minutes at 350¼.  In the meantime, make a lemon sauce:

In a medium bowl beat 2 eggs, 2 tablespoons lemon juice & 1/8 teaspoon

pepper until frothy.  Heat 1-1/4 cups of chicken broth to a simmer, and

whisk in the egg mixture in a thin stream.  Heat until the sauce

thickens, about 3 minutes, being careful to not let the sauce simmer or

it will curdle.  When the salmon-stuffed grape leaves are done, place on

plate and top with lemon sauce.


I hope you enjoy this recipe!


St. Paul, MN







"Steve & Judy Levine" <>


this is a recipe that my Armenian Grandfather passed down

to his children and that my favorite Aunt, Judy, has re-taught to me (I used

to 'help' him when I was a boy growing up in the 50s, in Boston).  This is a

country variety in that it doesn't use all the fancy spices and sweets that

Syrian and Greek Recipes call for - not even any pine nuts - no trees to

speak of where he grew up.  I prefer it to that found in restaurants and

canned or even in so-called Middle Eastern stores that have prepared foods.




Aunt Judy's Grape Leaves



4 Large Onions  (one in broth with lamb bones) chopped fine.

2 bunches of Parsley chopped fine.

4 tomatoes (Large (one in pot)) 3 chopped fine.

3 green peppers (one in pot) don't overpower) chopped fine.

3 1/2 pounds leg of lamb (Keep bone for broth) NO FAT, ground fine.2 \226 3 pounds of neck bones

3 - 4 large jars of grape leaves

3 1/2 - 4 cups rice




Lamb bones



1/2 green pepper




Combine in huge pot.


Cook for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, drain broth through a colander into another pot and

allow to cool.


Pick the lamb off the neck bones (that are now in the colander) once cool

and eat - Yummy!


Soak grape leaves in large pot simmer - DON'T BOIL - for 5 minutes to rinse

out the brine and tenderize.


Pour out through colander, fill pot with COLD water and put leaves back in

to cool down.


Once cool, drain and set aside.






Combine meat and vegetables together and season to taste; add rice - taste

for consistency.


Clean anything that stuck to the bottom of the first pot (Lamb parts,

veggies, etc) and line bottom with five or six layers of grape leaves to

prevent the good stuff from sticking.


Layer rolled leaves in grid pattern - packed tightly - 3/4 of the way up the



Press them down and cover with heavy object to prevent floating while

they're cooking (We use a Pyrex glass lid - it just fits).


Pour broth over; bring to a boil.


Continue on LOW boil for 15 minutes.


Try one every few minutes to determine the doneness of the rice (yeah,








Claire <>


Grape leaves

1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

3 large garlic cloves, minced

1 cup long-grain white rice

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

4 cups canned chicken broth

1/3 cup currants

1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted

1/3 cup minced fresh parsley

1/4 cup minced fresh mint

1 8-ounce jar grape leaves,* drained



1 cup plain yogurt

1/4 cup minced fresh mint

1 garlic clove, minced


Lemon wedges


*Available at Greek, Middle Eastern and most Italian markets.


For grape leaves:

Heat 1/4 cup oil in heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion and garlic. Sautˇ until very tender, about 10 minutes. Add rice and cumin and stir 1 minute. Add 2 cups broth and currants. Cover and simmer until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Transfer to bowl. Mix in nuts, parsley and mint. Season with salt and pepper. Cool completely (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill.)


Place grape leaves in bowl. Cover with cold water and let stand

30 minutes. Drain. Cut off stems. Arrange 1 leaf veined side up on work surface. Place 1 rounded tablespoon of rice filling on stem end. Repeat with remaining leaves and filling. Place seam side down in 2 heavy 12-inch skillets. Divide remaining 3 tablespoons oil and 2 cups broth between skillets. Cover; simmer over medium-low heat until liquid is absorbed, about 30 minutes. Uncover and let rolls cool. Transfer to platter. Cover and chill. (Can be made 1 day ahead.)


For sauce:

Combine yogurt, mint and garlic in small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.


Place grape leaf rolls on platter and garnish with lemon. Serve with sauce.


Makes about 30.


Bon Appˇtit

June 1992






Maricaye in San Francisco <>


This is a recipe that everyone seems to love.


Fill each grape leaf with:

1 heaping TB boursin cheese (recipe follows)

1 slice sun dried tomato packed in oil

Roll up leaf and place on barbecue or under broiler until heated through

Sprinkle with fresh lemon juice and serve immediately


These can be made a day ahead and chilled until ready to cook.


IF you don't want to use the boursin cheese, you can substitute cream cheese

or goat cheese mixed with minced garlic.  My favorite is goat cheese.




1 clove garlic - minced

16 ounces cream cheese - softened to room temp.

1 cup butter - softened to room temp. (don't substitute margarine)

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon dried basil

1/4 teaspoon dried dill

1/4 teaspoon dried marjoram

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Put all ingredients into a large mixing bowl and slowly mix them with a

stand mixer or hand electric mixer. Continuing mixing until the


are all evenly mixed. Mixing can also be done in a food processor.

Store cheese in air tight containers in the refrigerator at least

overnight so that flavors will meld.

Bring cheese to room temperature before serving, to improve the taste.

Cheese will keep in the frig. for 1-2 weeks or in freezer for up to 3 months




Darleen <>


Here is on. I don't know if it is the same. Also you can use cabbage leaves

instead of  grape leaves. Try w/ ground hamburger, sausage or lamb. Darlene



1 pound long-grain rice, washed and strained

1 jar preserved grape leaves, stems removed

2-3 spring onions, finely sliced

2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped

2 tablespoons dill, finely chopped

1 teaspoon mint

5 ounces olive oil

Juice of one lemon



Wash the vine leaves well, scald them with boiling water and place

them on a platter.


Prepare the stuffing. Sautˇ the onions in the olive oil lightly. Add

the washed and strained rice, the chopped parsley and dill, the mint,

a small amount of water, and salt and pepper. Cook for about 10

minutes. Remove from heat and let the mixture cool.


Place a teaspoon of the stuffing near the base of the leaf (at the

stem end) and fold it as follows:


Press the stuffing into a small sausage-like shape and fold over it

the stem end and both edges-towards the middle-inward. Then roll the

stuffed leaf over to make a tight small bundle.


Line the bottom of a pot with vine leaves and lay the stuffed leaves

in circles. When one layer is finished, begin a new one on its top.


Add some water and lemon juice and cover the last layer of stuffed

leaves with an inverted plate to prevent the leaves from coming apart.


Cook on medium heat for an hour and a half. Serve cold.


Yield: 5-6 servings