"As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy, and to make plans."--Ernest Hemingway

Dolma (Iraqi Style) Recipe

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This recipe for Dolma (Iraqi Style), by , is from MLHS Class of 2019 Cookbook, one of the cookbooks created at FamilyCookbookProject.com. We'll help you start your own personal cookbook! It's easy and fun. Click here to start your own cookbook!

Contributor:  
Contributor:  
Rama Wared

Category:
Category:

Ingredients:  
Ingredients:  
2 jars of grape tree leaves
4 12 oz cups of rice
2 lb of ground lamb meat
2 medium-sized onions
2 tbsp of 7-spice mixture
½ tbsp of turmeric spice
¼ tbsp of black pepper
2 tbsp of salt
1 ½ lemon
2 tbsp of any cooking oil (chef’s choice)
6 oz of tomato paste
3 12 0z cups of water

*The turmeric can be found in regular stores but the 7-spice mixture can only be found in Arab stores.

Directions:
Directions:
Chop onions fine and fry them in the oil until they turn golden. Add the turmeric, a teaspoon of the 7-spice mixture, and another teaspoon of black pepper. Mix well for about a minute. Then add the ground lamb and mix together with a single tablespoon of salt, let the meat cook until it turns brown on low temperature with a lid on the pan. After rinsing the rice once, drain it of the water and add to the meat and onions, mix well with the rest of the salt, black pepper, the 7-spice mixture, and ½ lemon for 1 minute. When done, set this aside until only slightly warm so that the grape leaves don’t tear when being rolled.

Find your biggest pot, wipe the bottom of the pot with a teaspoon of oil. On a chopping board, unroll the grape leaves. Depending on the size of the leaf, judge how much to scoop out of the meat-rice mixture and roll into the grape leaf. If the leaf is small use as little as a teaspoon full, but if large, as much as a tablespoon can be used. If the meat-rice mixture does not fit in the center of the leaf than you have too much. Roll as if rolling a burrito. Look up videos if needed. Keep rolling until you run out of the stuffing (the meat-rice mixture) and putting them in the pot.

Mix the tomato paste with the water in a separate pan, add a little bit of salt and squeeze 1 lemon and mix until it becomes the color of the paste. When done, poor on the rolls in the pot. Find a strong plate that is as close to the size of the pot as possible, press the plate down on top of the rolls in the pot so that the water doesn’t boil over and the rolls break open. Then cover the pot with its lid. Place the pot on the highest temperature that your stove can go to until it starts to boil then count 5 minutes. After the 5 minutes, turn the temperature to low.

Here is the tricky part, if you want to dry it completely then leave on the stove until the juice is gone. You check this by getting a long knife or spatula and poke it down the middle, when you pull it out it should be completely dry. If you want to keep some juice keep on the low temperature for 20-25 minutes then take a roll from the very top and open it to check if the rice has fully cooked, if it is then you are done. If not, keep on the stove and keep checking every 5 minutes.

When down, set aside for about 30 minutes to cool, then take the rolls out one by one to serve. If you are having a big family dinner and everyone is together, you can get your biggest tray, remove the lid and plate, place the tray on top of the pot and with the help of someone, flip the pot so that the tray is underneath. Slowly lift the pot and the Dolma will be ready to serve!

Number Of Servings:
Number Of Servings:
6
Preparation Time:
Preparation Time:
1 1/2 hours
Personal Notes:
Personal Notes:
When preparing dolma one must be peaceful. If the preparer of dolma is tense, the dish will come out hard as a rock and those who eat it could shatter their teeth. When making dolma make sure to remove the stems carefully from the grape tree leaves, trying to keep the leaves from ripping. Not only will it be hard to warp a ripped leaf, but it will also come undone while it is getting cooked. Dolma tastes like home. It's like the curly fry you find at the bottom of your fries.

 

 

 

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