– 250 g (.5 lb) fresh vine leaves (or preserved)
– 250 g (.5 lb) ground meat
– 250 g (.5 lb) fresh herbs, equal portions of parsley,
chive, mint, dill, scallion, and tarragon
– 1/2 cup white rice
– 1 medium onion
– 4 tbs lime juice or vinegar
– 2 tbs sugar
– 1 tbs tomato paste
– 3 tbs oil salt and pepper
1. Slice the onion and fry in a little oil until it turns golden brown. Add the meat and stir-fry until brown.
2. Add tomato paste, salt and pepper, 1 tbs sugar and 2 tbs lime juice. Let the meat simmer until there is no liquid left.
3. Clean the herbs removing coarse stems, wash, dry, chop finely and add to the meat.
4. Boil the rice for 15 minutes. Strain and mix with the meat and the herbs. This is the stuffing.
5. When using fresh vine leaves, choose new and fresh ones, cut the stems, wash and arrange in a pot with enough water to cover. Add a touch of salt and bring to boil until leaves are tender. Strain and set aside to cool down.
6. In a saucepan, add 1 tbs oil and arrange 2 rows of leaves to cover the bottom.
7. To prepare, put a small portion of the stuffing in the center of the leaf and fold the sides of the leaf over the stuffing tightly.
8. Arrange stuffed leaves in the saucepan tightly next to each other with the folded side down. Add a cup of water. Place a plate upside down over the IranOnline.com before closing the lid. The plate helps to keep stuffed leaves folded while being cooked. Cook on low heat and add more water if necessary until ready.
9. When stuffed leaves are almost cooked, pour the mixture of 1 tbs sugar and 2 tbs lime juice over them.
10. Remove from the heat when the sauce is absorbed. Stuffed leaves can be served hot or cold.