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Mihshi Waraq Inab (Stuffed Grapevine Leaves)

Makes about 4 dozen.

  • 1 jar preserved grapevine leave (1 lb, 9 oz)
  • 6 T. butter
  • 3/4 lb. ground lamb or beef
  • 3/4 c. uncooked rice
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 T. salt
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 c. lemon juice

Soak rice in hot water about 10 minutes. Melt butter, reserving one tablespoon unmelted. Put drained rice in the butter and add seasonings. Remove from flame and mix with the uncooked meat. To roll: Set aside the oversized or badly torn leaves. Snip any stem ends from the leaves. Spread the leaf flat, place a heaping teaspoon of filling on the stem end of the rough side. Beginning to roll toward the tip, fold side edges over. Continue rolling and squeeze gently. Place rolled leaves, opening face down, in orderly stacks in a 2 1/2 quart saucepan, lined with some of the large or torn leaves. Add reserved butter and cover with several big leaves to hold rolls in place while cooking. Add two c. of hot water and 1 T. more of salt. Then lower the flame and cook 30 minutes. Add lemon juice and cook 10 more minutes. Drain water, remove plate and large leaves. Remove rolls carefully.

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