Sunday, January 13, 2013

Fennel Pollen + Nutmeg-Scented Stuffed Grape Leaves

Almost a year ago now, my best girlfriends and I went to an event at a local tasting room: Meeting the Queen of Quince. She had us roll Yalanchi Sarma, Armenian stuffed grape leaves. For Ulla's Mediterranean birthday feast, I decided to try my hand at my own version. Yum!

2 C cooked bulgur wheat
1 pound 96/4 organic grassfed ground beef
3 shallots, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
pinch of fennel pollen
dash of ground nutmeg
freshly ground salt and pepper

In a large, flat-bottom pan saute the shallots and garlic in a splash of olive oil until softened. Add the meat and cook throroughly. Season with spices and stir in the bulgur.

Place a teaspoon of your filling in the center of a grape leaf. Keeping constant pressure, roll the grape leaf into a packet. Because my grape leaves were so small, I used two for each roll.

Arrange the rolls in a baking dish. Lay sliced of lemon over the top. Fill your pan with water so that the water comes to the top of the rolls. Add a splash of Sambuca and a splash of olive oil. Lay grape leaves over the top and cover with foil. Bake in a 375 degree oven for 90 minutes, until the liquid is completely absorbed and the rolls are soft. Serve with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

*Update: 1/15/2013 - Linked up to Munchie Monday (MM#10) at*

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