Stuff Yourself

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Dolmades or dolmas — better known as stuffed grape leaves — have long been a fixture of Mediterranean-style appetizer spreads. They’re one of those foods that just seem to materialize magically from supermarket cans or specialty-store containers; we eat them happily, but most of us have never endeavored to make them ourselves. Truth be told, sometimes we don’t even know what’s inside them.

Until recently, I tackled dolmas exactly once: in a forlorn upstate New York town that had some vineyards. But since then, I’ve made the project routine, because D.I.Y. dolmas are not only doable but come with a significant advantage: choice. Whether they are from regular grocery stores (not great) or Mediterranean markets (much better), dolmas are typically the same: grape leaves stuffed with soft rice, sometimes lentils or meat and whopped with lemon. Making them yourself means you cannot only play around with the flavors of the fillings, but you can also use other grains and leaves as well.

Read the rest of this article, here.

Posted in Recipes


  1. D. Bran said...

    Take care to use organic leaves. Grape production normally involves a lot of fungicide and pesticide application.

  2. Cypat said...

    My Cypriot friend advised me to place a plate on top of the dolmas before adding the liquid to the pot and weight to plate with a large, clean rock. It keeps the leaves from unrolling while simmering.

  3. Mike Norman said...

    Thanks for the article. I was first introduced to dolmas by a co-worker while on a business trip in New England many years ago. He was from Slovakia and had a really wide range of experience in different culinary tastes. We stopped at a little Greek restaurant he knew about. It was the kind of place where everyone working there was speaking their native language and most of them were family. He talked me into ordering some dolmas. To this day, I still remember how absolutely wonderful they were. I had never had much in the way of authentic Mediterranean cuisine, but my eyes were opened up that day to a whole new way of experiencing food. I never pass up an opportunity to dig into a plate full of these. They are one of my favorites.

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