Heirloom Meals: Savoring Yesterday's Traditions Today

Agnes Djaha’s Yebret (Stuffed Grape Leaves)

Step 1:

Begin by making Hashwa, the basic meat and rice stuffing:

½ cup uncooked rice

1 lb. coarsely ground lamb

1/3 cup water

2 tsp. allspice

1 tbs. pine nuts, called Sanoobar (optional)

Salt to taste

Rinse the rice and drain

Mix rice, meat, salt and allspice, and optional pine nuts

Mix with water for moisture.

This stuffing is also used in other Arabic dishes, including stuffed squash, cabbage, and eggplant. Refrigerate until ready to roll grape leaves.

Step 2:

Approximately 60 grape leaves (can be purchased in jars in many supermarkets and specialty stores)

Basic Meat and Rice Stuffing (as above)

¾ cup fresh lemon juice

2 cups of water with one tbsp salt
10 to 20 cloves of garlic, to taste

Four or five lamb neck bones with meat

Spread out each leaf individually

Lay approximately one tbsp. of meat and rice stuffing on leaf

Turn in the sides and roll cigar fashion

Place lamb neck bones in bottom of a 2 quart sauce pan

When leaves are rolled, stack in pan

Sprinkle with garlic cloves

Pour water and lemon juice over grape leaves and garlic

Lay a heavy plate on top of rolled grape leaves so that they will not loosen

Cover and cook on high flame to boiling point

Reduce heat and cook 20 to 25 minutes

Close heat and allow grape leaves to remain in the pot for 15 to 20 minutes to absorb flavors

Drain juice carefully into a bowl

Arrange grape leaves on platter and sprinkle with cook garlic

Serve and enjoy!

Categories: Heirloom Recipes, Special Diets

Tags: stuffed grape leaves, Antioch University Green MBA, syrian cuisine, food memory, agnes djaha