Bringing a bit of Mediterranean to your table!
Stuffed Grape Leaves
1 (16 ounce) jar grape leaves, about 60-70 in brine
1 1/2 cups short grained white rice
2 tbsp. Extra virgin olive oil plus more for drizzling
1 pound lean ground beef
1/2 tsp. Kosher salt, plus more
1/4 tsp. Pepper, plus more
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1/2 cup fresh dill, chopped
1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped
2 medium Yukon gold potatoes, sliced
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
Drain grape leaves and soak them in a large bowl of water. Gently separate and wash each leaf and then set on plate. Cover them with a damp cloth so they don't dry out.
Soak rice in water for about 20 minutes and then drain. Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Cook the ground beef until browned. Drain any excess grease if needed. Season with salt, pepper, cinnamon, allspice and cumin.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the meat, drained rice, parsley, dill and mint. Season lightly with kosher salt. Add a generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and mix until everything is incorporated.
To stuff and roll the grape leaves, lay a grape leaf flat on a cutting board, scoop out a heaping teaspoon of the mixture into the center of the grape leaf, and carefully fold in the sides and roll it like you would when making a wrap. Repeat until all the stuffing has been used. Line the bottom of a large pot with the potatoes and season with salt and pepper. Arrange the grape leaves in rows, alternating directions, to completely cover the circumference of the pot. Drizzle each layer with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place a round plate on top of grape leaves in the pot to hold them down and to prevent them from floating while they are cooking.
Add about 4-5 cups of boiling water to completely cover the grape leaves and the plate.
Cover the pot with the lid and cook over medium heat for about 30 minutes until the liquid has been absorbed. Uncover and remove the plate, then pour lemon juice over the top of grape leaves. Cover again with the lid (no plated needed) and cook on low heat for 30 minutes more or until fully cooked.
Remove from heat and allow to cool a bit. Transfer to a dish!