<script async src=”//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js”></script>
<!– Front page sidebar –>
<ins class=”adsbygoogle”
(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

Stuff Yourself on Iraqi Dolmas

Stuff Yourself on Iraqi Dolmas

An Iraqi Variation On An Old Theme

The biggest problem with writing about foods from the seven “banned” nations is that they are in the same region and share a culinary history and ingredients. There are similar dishes that are found in each country with varying names and preparations. Regardless, some areas are known for their take on common dishes. We just have to resist discussing the same dishes over and over.

Most of us are familiar with the rice-filled grape leaves found at many Mediterranean restaurants, but Iraqi cuisine is famous for a variety of vegetables filled with rice, lamb and spices.

The techniques used in preparing Iraqi dolmas are different from those typically used in western cuisine, but just take a bit of practice and the right kitchen tools. The most important tools are an apple corer and a small melon baller.

Younger and smaller vegetables work best for dolmas, as older veggies tend to be tougher and have a stronger flavor.

Hollowing out the vegetables requires careful work using an apple corer. Ideally, a cylinder of the vegetable will pull out easily, leaving a thin wall at one end.

Iraqi Dolmas

Special equipment:

Apple corer;

Small melon baller;

Low, wide pot with cover or Dutch oven


1 pound ground lamb or beef;

2 cups long-grain rice (Basmati or Jasmine);

10-14 grape leaves, from jar, rinsed;

A mixture of two or three of the following:

4-6 small zucchini,

3-5 small eggplant,

6-10 small, mild peppers,

8-12 Roma tomatoes;

3 cups chicken, beef or lamb stock;

1-2 tablespoon olive oil;

1/4 cup minced red onion;

1 tablespoon minced garlic;

1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley, plus more for garnish;

2 teaspoons dried thyme;

2 teaspoons ground sumac, plus more for garnish;

Zest and juice of two lemons;

Salt and pepper to taste

To make the filling, hydrate long-grain rice in cold water for at least an hour. Drain the rice, then sauté briefly in olive oil with minced onions and garlic.

Mix with raw ground lamb, beef or a blend. Season well and stuff in the prepared veggies. Small pinches of filling pushed into the veggies worked best for me.

To roll the grape leaves, place a small cylinder (a bit smaller than a wine cork) of the mixture on the leaf near the stem. Fold the sides in, then roll up, much like making a burrito.

Place the dolmas in a wide, low pot or Dutch oven, packing them tight to prevent blowouts as the rice expands. Add the stock to just cover the dolmas and simmer over low heat until the interior of the dolmas reach 165° F.

Garnish with sumac and parsley. Serve with beans or a cooked grain such as bulgur wheat.

The following two tabs change content below.
Steve “Mo” Fye is an Instructional Tech in the Culinary Arts program at Central New Mexico Community College and has been known to giggle after making a low-fat, gluten-free, low-cholesterol dish and eating it with a sauce he knows will blow his diet for days.

Latest posts by Steve "Mo" Fye (see all)


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply


  • vacation rentals lake como italy
    May 27, 2018, 5:45 pm

    I felt very happy while reading this site. This was really very informative site for me. I really liked it. This was really a cordial post. Thanks a lot!

  • click here
    June 12, 2018, 1:45 am

    I got the most useful information for my research. Thanks for posting, maybe we can see more on this.

  • internet marketing company
    July 26, 2018, 6:08 am

    I got the most useful information for my research. Thanks for posting, maybe we can see more on this

  • calling me
    July 28, 2018, 6:01 am

    Superbly written article, if only all bloggers offered the same content as you, the internet would be a far better place..

  • Cheapest auto insurance
    August 3, 2018, 5:37 am

    I think this is an informative post and it is very useful and knowledgeable. therefore, I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article.

The following two tabs change content below.
Albuquerque’s definitive alternative newspaper publishing an inquisitive, modern approach to the news and entertainment stories that matter most to New Mexicans. ABQ Free Press’ fresh voice speaks to insightful and involved professionals who care deeply about our community.