Before I get into today’s Greek recipe, Paleo Dolmathes – Stuffed Grape Leaves, I need to tell you that I am so happy! It is about damn time that Dr.Oz was called out (check out this article as well)! (Here comes a bit of a rant…) Dr.Oz is the bane of actual healthcare professionals’ existences. The BS that this guy spouts is utter nonsense. Just his name causes my blood pressure to rise. It’s shocking that as a trained medical doctor he would throw around the word miracle as much as he does in reference to supplements, or that he’s sooooo misleading with the information that he provides, and that he does this all publicly. shudder!
I have a lot of respect for Oprah, but I will never forgive her for making Dr.Oz. Why doesn’t he just focus on the lifestyle changes that actually make a difference to health, like diet and exercise, instead of contributing to society’s problem of just wanting a magic pill. I actually watched the clip from the episode of his show about the Paleo diet. He rubs me the wrong way, and I think he could have focused on the good information rather than looking like he’s trying too hard to act like he knows what it’s like to be a woman in his audience. But I’m sure he’s a nice guy…
On to someone who is a much more pleasant influence: Dr. Lissa Rankin. Please take the time to listen to these talks about her medical beliefs and the changes she’s made in her life and her practice. This doctor’s philosophy is much more in line with what I think.
I know those are long, but worthwhile. Here’s a quick fun one with the hilarious Elizabeth Banks about heart attacks. And even though it’s funny, the message is important (know symptoms, and don’t ignore them).
Paleo Dolmathes. Stuffed Grape Leaves. These are delicious. But if you’re like me, they can take forever to wrap. I watched at least a couple episodes of Sherlock (great series BTW). But I could imagine the whole family in the kitchen, everyone wrapping, talking, and laughing. Instead, I watched TV alone while folding grape leaves. I was a drippy mess, but these lil beauties were well worth all the work.
See all of our Paleo Greek Weeks recipes here.
Paleo Dolmathes – Stuffed Grape Leaves
- 2 cups Paleo Greek-style “rice”
- 750g (approx) ground beef
- 1/2 red onion (diced)
- 2–3 garlic cloves (crushed/diced)
- 1 cup fresh mint (diced)
- 3 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1/3 cup pine nuts (chopped)
- 1 jar grape leaves
- 2 Tbsp ghee
- salt to taste
- In a large pot or pan saute onions in ghee over medium heat until soft.
- Add ground beef and garlic; cook until beef is browned.
- Mix in salt, lemon juice, mint, pine nuts, and Paleo Greek-style “rice”.
- Continue to cook until beef is done, then remove from heat.
- Remove grape leaves from jar (this may have been the most difficult part for me, and unfortunately I don’t have any tips). ***If you find the leaves too tough, or bitter, you can blanch them in a pot of simmering water for 5 minutes – I didn’t find this was necessary with the jar I used.
- Rinse and drain grape leaves.
- On work surface (I recommend at a table with family or friends, or like me in front of the TV on a cutting board), place a grape leaf shiny-side down with the bottom of the leaf towards you.
- If there is a stem still connected, please remove with a knife.
- Spoon some of the beef mixture (1-2 Tbsp depending on the size of your leaf) onto the base of the leaf.
- Fold the bottom part of the leaf up and over the filling, fold each side of the leaf inwards, and then roll up like a burrito (see slideshow above).
- Repeat until leaves or filling is finished.
- Serve warm.
Many recipes that I looked at would then steam or heat the rolled dolmathes (in a slow cooker, dutch oven or deep skillet, but I didn’t find this step necessary).
Wow, they do look like a lot of work, but I guess not any more than making samosas.
I did make kale chips this week but didn’t have enough dill in the garden to make your recipe. I used one with nutritional yeast and some pepper. Turned out quite nice.
Have a good day!
It’s definitely a communal ritual to make dolmades as a family, sitting around the kitchen, chatting, giving/receiving advice, and making a meal together.
You can also use onions instead of grapevine leaves! It works best with sweeter, smaller onions! Slice off both ends of the onion, use the knife to then cut longitudinally (not all the way through! The idea is to be able to peel off the layers whole). Then, remove a few of the outer, more “tough” layers, and fill the onion layers, rolling them like you would a wrap!
Traditionally, you steam it all…Pyrex in the oven, stovetop…whatever. Yum!
Ooh, interesting! I’ve never heard of using onions like that. Nice!
Holley just sent me this link. I highly recommend it. More on Dr. Oz. I like the proposed name.
Well, I found your website about an hour ago – looking for a particular recipe. I found that, but I doubt any cooking will be done anytime soon – I appear to be lost in a maze of the most amazing recipes! lol Does anyone know how to deal with fresh grape leaves for this recipe? I have two massive vines outside, and would love to be able to use what I know are organic and fresh as they come!… Now I am off to get lost again.
Lin, that’s awesome! I’m glad that you’re spending the day lost in the land of The Primal Desire! I do not have any experience cooking with fresh grape leaves, but a quick internet search gave me some other people’s opinions.
The grape leaves are pretty tough and one person said they only use the canned stuff (believing that the salt brine helped tenderize them). But if you do use them, picking them in late Spring seems to be preferred. Remove the stems and large veins, then you will need to cook them in some way (in liquid). Many dolmathes recipes require cooking after they’ve been wrapped.
These guys seem to know what they’re talking about: http://whatscookingamerica.net/Q-A/GrapeLeaves.htm
Hey Raj, I feel the same way about Dr Phil. How on earth has someone like Oprah, who clearly has such good intentions, helped to create 2 media whore monsters!
THe filling for this is really good. There is garlic listed in the directions but not in the ingredients list, whereas there is onion in the ingredients list but not in the directions. I’mI’m sorry this is in all capital letters. I don’t know why my iPad is doing that.
Erin, thank you so much for pointing this out. How did I miss putting garlic in the ingredients?! Tsk tsk. As for the onions, they are right there in the first step.
How embarrassing. Thank you so much for reaching out about that. Hope they turned out well. I could really go for a plate of these right now…!
Looking forward to trying these with cauliflower rice. that’s a great idea. i just need a whole afternoon that I can devote to the project. i appreciate what you said about dr. oz. i am in total agreement and have wondered why oprah was so into him.
Right? Oprah, you’re better than that!
It is one of those fun afternoon activities to connect with people, assuming you have someone help you make them. Let us know how it turns out. Thanks for the comment Rachel!