We usually make these as a side for a Sunday roast. They do require some time but if you can get some extra hands to help with the filling and rolling it can be quite fun! The vine leaves can be bought at any good middle eastern grocers but I have seen them in the odd supersized store as well. They come in jars with brine or in vacuum packed pouches. Remember the the thinner the leaf the more tender they will be. I also like to stuff onions and peppers.
For the filling
1 cup long grain rice, washed.
1 pound mixed mince. I used veal, beef and pork.
Bunch chopped parsley
1/2 cup tomato puree
Juice of 1 lemon
1 chopped onion
Vine leaves ( the amount depends on the size of the leaves as they all differ) Here I used about 20.
Preheat oven to 350F
The first thing you need to do is get a pan of salted water going. Open the leaves and simmer for about 20 minutes or so.
Meanwhile make the filling. In a large bowl add the rest of the ingredients and mix to combine. When the leaves are finished, drain.
With the leaves flat add about a tsp of the filling and roll to make what looks like little cigars, tucking in the sides. When all are done and are snug in the roasting tin cover with a few of the left over leaves and cover with with warm water. Cover with tin foil and cook for 1 hour. Keep checking to make sure that there is enough water. When the rice is cooked you are ready to eat.
Eat with a side of fresh natural yogurt.
If you’re interested in making these, then check out our YouTube video down below!