Contributing Monkie Russell James
Published on June 8, 2008
“Oh man, I don’t know which of Russel’s recipes I want to try first. I love stuffed vine leaves and these look so amazing. I’m not so much into nori and the salty soy sauce flavors, they’re ok sometimes. What I really love though is Mediterranean food. Hummus, pita, tabouli, couscous, olives, and especially dolmas! I have never come accross grape leaves though in the store, not even the canned kind. Maybe I haven’t been looking in the right isles or hard enough, or maybe you can only get them at special greek grocers or something. I would love to find the fresh organic grape vine leaves. I’ve been scouring the internet to see if there is a speciality source I can order from online. My search so far has turned out disapointing. All I can find is recipes or the canned kind. I guess you have to live near a vineyard and go beg them in the spring for their leaves. But anyways, if you can find some good vine leaves, this recipe looks worth trying." – Indulge
Stuffed Vine Leaves with Mint Cashew Aioli (raw)
Makes 16+ stuffed vine leaves
Time: 30 mins (once you’ve got the hang of rolling the things)
Ease rating: ***
Equipment: Knife, Food Processor
What you’ll need to do ahead of time: Pickle the vine leaves, soak the sun-dried tomatoes.
For the Vine Leaves:
3 Cups Cauliflower or Parsnip
1/2 Cup Olive Oil
1 Clove Garlic
1/2 Cup Pine Nuts
3 Tsp Lemon Zest
2 TB Lemon Juice
1/2 Tsp Cinnamon
1Tsp Sea Salt
5 Spring Onions
1 Cup Sun-dried Tomatoes, soaked for 2+ hours, then chopped into thin strips
2 Cups tightly packed fresh mint, minced
1/2 Cup Raisins, roughly chopped
*Pickled vine leaves
Step 1 Pulse the cauliflower/parsnip in a food processor until it has a rice-like consistency. Transfer to a large bowl.
Step 2 In a high power blender blend the olive oil, garlic, pine nuts, lemon zest, cinnamon, lemon juice, sea salt and spring onions until creamy. Add this mixture to the rice and mix well.
Step 3 Add the sun-dried tomatoes, mint and raisins to the mixture and mix again.
Step 4 Now take one vine leaf at a time and place it stem-side up on a chopping board or sushi rolling mat if you prefer. Place between 1 and 2 tablespoons worth on the mixture on the leaf, depending on the size of the leaf.
Step 5 Roll up the leaf from the bottom first and tuck in the side bits after the first roll. I find it helps to brush olive oil on to the leaf at this point to help it stick. Once the sides are in, finish rolling upwards to make a neat little package. You may not get this first time but keep practicing and have fun with it.
Step 6 Continue until all the mixture is used.
For the Mint Cashew Aioli:
1 Cup Cashews
1 TB Lemon Juice
1/2 Tsp Sea Salt
1/2 Tsp Agave
1 Tsp Lemon Zest
5 Cloves of Garlic
1/2 Cup Water
1/3 Cup tightly packed Mint
Step 1 Place all ingredients except the mint in a high power blender until creamy.
Step 2 Add the mint to the blender and pulse in so to leave mint visible in the Aioli.
Step 3 Serve with stuffed vine leaves.