Thursday, October 14, 2010

Daring Cooks October Challenge - Stuffed Grape Leaves

Welcome to my first daring cooks challenge post. So after signing up for daring kitchen and waiting another two weeks until I can finally participate in the October challenge I was excited to see that we were making grape leaves. Being Middle Eastern myself this is something I have grown up with and and have been taught to make... so with that said challenge number 1 has been a breeze :)

Our October 2010 hostess, Lori of  Lori's Lipsmacking Goodness, has challenged The Daring Cooks to stuff grape leaves. Lori chose a recipe from Aromas of Aleppo and a recipe from The New Book of Middle Eastern Food.

We were given the option of using two different recipes or even using one of our own as long as the recipe included rice. I went with a traditional middle eastern stuffed grape leaves recipe that i grew up with. Now onto the fun part....

Makes about 60 grape leaves, depending on the size and amount of stuffing used
Fresh grape leaves or 1 jar of grape leaves
1 cup rice - rinsed and drained a few times
4-5 small tomatoes - diced into small cubes
2-3 green onions - chopped
1 cup parsley - finely chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup olive oil
1-2 potatoes - cut into rings

1. Take grape leaves and dip into boiling water for about 5 seconds and place in colander to drain. If using grape leaves from a jar make sure you wash them first and if you'd like you can also place them in the boiling water as you would with the fresh leaves.
2. Wash, rinse and drain out the rice about 3 times and cut up all your veggies.
3. Mix all ingredients together.

4. At this point you can taste the water in the bowl and add more salt, lemon, etc to your own desired taste.
5. Lay a grape leaf on a flat work surface vein side up and fill with about 1 tsp of filling, again depending on the size of your leaf you may want to add more or less.

6. Fold in each side of the leaf and then roll from bottom up. Traditionally grape leaves are made to look thin and long.

7. Once all your grape leaves are filled and rolled, you can add them to your pot. If you'd like you may add a layer of potatoes or even carrots on the bottom.

8. Pour ontop any left over juice from the bowl that had the filling in it. Place on stove and add about 2 cups water and another 1/2 cup lemon juice. Bring to a boil and then turn down heat and let simmer for about 45 - 60 min until the leaves are tender. Make sure to place a plate ontop of the leaves to prevent them from unfolding during the cooking process.


  1. Welcome to the daring kitchen, and congrats on finishing your first challenge so beautifully! Your grape leaves look fantastic. Can't wait to see what next month brings us! :)

  2. Hello and welcome to the Daring Cooks' and congrats on your first challenge it worked out fabulously and your rolls are so thin gorgeous great step by step photos. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

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  4. Your stuffed grape leaves look wonderful.I saw your blog from the foodie blog roll and I like what you have here.if you won't mind I'd love to guide Foodista readers to this post.Just add the foodista widget at the end of this post and it's all set, Thanks!

  5. Lovely recipe for the grape leaves, love the stuffing. Haven't made anything with grape leaves in forever, thanks for a nice idea for my guests this weekend.

  6. Welcome, and congratulations on your first Cook's challenge! Your stuffed leaves look beautiful, and it looks like you really are going to be an AMAZING addition to the kitchen!!