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You'll love this recipe from our friend, Sylvia Rombis, who showed Cincinnati locals how to make traditional Greek dolmádes & tzatziki at last month's Greek Panegyri. Have fun making these at home and take your family & friends on a trip to Greece with this delicious, authentic dish!
a 16 oz jar of brined grape leaves
1 lb ground beef, 90% lean
1 cup instant rice (like Uncle Ben's)
¼ tsp sea salt
¼ tsp pepper
1 medium-sized onion, finely chopped (makes about 1 ½ cups)
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, you can reduce if using meat that has more fat (more than 15%)
1 tsp dill or mint
6 cups chicken broth, or enough to cover the dolmádes
Fill a large pot with water (big enough to hold all the grape leaves) and place it on high heat. When the water comes to a boil, add the grape leaves and blanch for 5 minutes. Drain and set them aside.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground beef, rice, sea salt, pepper, onion, olive oil, and dill, and mix well.
Take a knife and cut off the stem of each grape leaf. Lay them flat, ribs up, on a cutting board or work surface. Place about 1 tablespoon of the meat & rice mixture at the bottom of each leaf and fold over the sides of the leaf to cover the mixture. Then roll upwards. Place each dolmá into a baking dish.
Once all dolmádes are done, cover the tops of them with any torn grape leaves (if you have them).
Pour over them about a cup and a half of the chicken broth, cover with parchment paper, and then aluminum foil.
Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour, but after about 30 minutes, check the liquid - if it's already absorbed, add a half cup more. After the hour is up, turn off your oven and leave the dish in the oven to set for 10-15 minutes.
Serve with tzatziki sauce (recipe below), either warm, at room temp, or chilled...they make a delicious snack! You can store these in the fridge for about four days or so or freeze any you have leftover.
½ cup finely grated cucumber, squeezed in a paper towel to remove some of the water
1 cup thick whole milk Greek yogurt
1 tbsp of Sparoza's Greek Granny's Tzatziki Mix to make it easy, or use all of the below ingredients
1 tbsp lemon juice plus the zest of one lemon
1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, grated
¼ teaspoon sea salt
1 tbsp chopped dill
1 tbsp chopped mint, optional
Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl and keep chilled in the fridge until ready to serve.
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