Tomato and Herb Dolmas with Zucchini Fritters & Tzatziki

What You’ll Need:

For the Tzatziki

3 Cups Greek Yogurt

3 Garlic Cloves, finely grated

3 Tbsp Dill, Chopped

1 Tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice

1 Tbsp Olive Oil

For the Dolmas

1 Cup Basmati Rice

1 Small White Onion, Grated

1 ½ Canned Whole Peeled Tomato, Finely Chopped

1 Tbsp Tomato Paste

1 Tbsp Fresh Mint, Chopped

3 Tbsp Fresh Parsley, Chopped

½ Tsp Cinnamon

1 Tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice

5 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 Jar Brined Grape Leaves (Available in the international section)

Salt & Pepper to Taste

1 tbsp Tomato Paste

1 Cup Cold Water

For the Fritters

3 Zucchini, grated

4 Green Onions, white and green parts chopped

4 Garlic Cloves, crushed

¼ Cup Fresh Dill, Chopped

Handful of Fresh Parsley, Chopped

½ Tsp Ground Coriander

1 Tsp Smoked Paprika

4 Large Eggs, Lightly Beaten

Zest of 1 Lemon

½ Cup AP Flour

½ Tsp Baking Powder

2/3 Cup Crumbled Feta

Sunflower Oil for Frying

Salt and Pepper to Taste

What You’ll Do:

  1. To make the Tzatziki combine the Greek yogurt, garlic, dill, lemon juice and olive oil. Stir to combine and set aside in the fridge.
  2. To begin the dolmas, mix the (uncooked) rice, grated onion, tomato, tomato paste, mint, parsley, cinnamon, lemon juice and olive oil. Stir to combine and set aside.
  3. In a medium soup bot bring water to a boil then turn off heat. Place about 20-25 grape leaves into the water and steep for about 5 minutes. Remove and rinse under cold water.
  4. Lay each leaf flat on a large plate or cutting board vain side up. Place about 2 tablespoons of the rice mixture onto the bottom of the leaf and fold away from you like a burrito. (Each leaf will vary in size, so place as much of the mixture that will fit and still able to fold.
  5. Layer the dolmas into the bottom of a large heavy bottomed stock pot. Once complete.
  6. Mix the tomato paste and water thoroughly and pour over top of the dolmas. Cover with a plate and place over low-medium heat. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes or until the rice is fully cooked. (If rice needs more time add about another ½ cup of water and cook for an additional 15 minutes).
  7. Meanwhile, lets make the fritters…
  8. Grate the Zucchini and place into a colander for about 10 minutes allowing most of the water to drain.
  9. Combine all of the other ingredients, other than the zucchini and feta, in a large bowl.
  10. With your hands, most of the remaining moisture from the zucchini and place into bowl. Combine and then fold in the feta.
  11. Add a layer of oil to a frying pan and heat over medium-high heat. Once hot, spoon the zucchini mixture into the pan and press with the spoon to flatten (about 3-4 inches each). Cook for about 3-4 minutes on each side until golden and place onto a paper towel lined plate to drain. Repeat until you’ve used all of the mixture. Tip: You may want to wait until the last 20 minutes or so of the dolmas so that everything is finished at the same time.
  12. To serve, spoon a good amount of the Tzatziki into the middle of the plate. Surround with 4-5 dolmas a couple of fritters. Serve with your favorite Greek or tomato salad.
  13. Enjoy.

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