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Deconstructed Dolmades (Unstuffed Grape Leaves)

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"My family loves my dolmades (stuffed grape leaves) but they are a bit too much effort for a weeknight dinner. I recently tried deconstructing them and was very happy with the results. I hope you like them too."
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1 h 5 m servings 507
Original recipe yields 4 servings


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  1. Soak rice in a bowl of cool water for 15 to 30 minutes.
  2. Coarsely chop the grape leaves and place in fresh water to soak.
  3. Heat a 2- to 3-quart pan over medium-high heat. Cook and stir beef until browned and crumbly, 5 to 7 minutes. Drain and discard grease. Add broth, juice of 1 lemon, onion, parsley, olive oil, mint, dill, pepper, and salt. Drain grape leaves and add to the pan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.
  4. Rinse and drain rice, then add to the pot. Bring to a simmer and cook, uncovered, until tender, 12 to 15 minutes. Gradually add more chicken broth as needed keep liquid level above the meat-rice mixture. Be careful not to overcook the rice.
  5. Drain cooking liquid into another pan to make the sauce. Add remaining lemon juice; season with salt and pepper. Mix in enough cornstarch until sauce resembles a medium-bodied gravy. Ladle sauce generously over the meat-rice mixture.


  • Cook's Notes:
  • Use basmati rice if desired.
  • Use tapioca flour instead of cornstarch if preferred.

Nutrition Facts

Per Serving: 507 calories; 21.1 54.7 27.9 78 3025 Full nutrition

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