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Grape leaves cake with rice & lamb

Materials for a 22 cm-
diameter pan:

300 g minced lamb meat or
minced beef meat with lamb fat
1.5 cups of round/persian
rice (300 g)
1 jar of grape leaves, washed
0.25 cup of olive oil

1 chopped large onion
1 red bell pepper, cut in cubes
2 mashed garlic cloves
1 spoon of baharat spice
3 tablespoons of chopped
3 tablespoons of chopped mint
(or a full spoon of dry mint)

Salt and ground black pepper
For the sauce:
4 tablespoons of fresh
lemon juice
2 cups of boiling hot water
3 tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and ground black pepper

For submission:
2 tablespoons of toasted pine nuts
1 tablespoon of chopped parsley and mint

Grape leaves cake with rice & lamb
Grape leaves cake with rice & lamb
Grape leaves cake with rice & lamb


Heat up a pan with olive oil and fry onion with bell pepper cubes for 5 minutes until they turn golden. Add the garlic and the meat and cook for 3 minutes, while stirring, until the meat changes color. Add in salt, pepper and baharat spice, and mix. Add in the rice and cook for 2-3 minutes until the rice turns white. Turn off the fire, add in parsley and mint, and stir. Preparing the cake: Place pistachio nuts at the bottom of the pot. Cover them with a layer of grape leaves, so they cover the bottom and the sides of the pot completely, and go over the edges of the pot. Place half of the meat and rice mixture, flatten it, and cover it with another layer of grape leaves (leave some edges with no filling). Place the rest of the meat and rice mixture, and cover it with another later of grape leaves (2 layers of rice and 3 layers of grape leaves in total). Push the leaves’ edges into the pot. Now the leaves cover the filling completely from every side. Prepare the sauce and cook: Mix the sauce ingredients with water and pour on top. Cover with a lid and cook for an hour on small heat. You can also cook it in the over on medium- low heat. Wait for about 15 minutes and flip carefully onto a serving plate, place pine nuts, mint and parsley on top and serve with half a lemon.

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