World Cuisine - Greece
We will focus this week on Stuffed Grape Leaves, called Dolmathes in Greek. Some historians say the history of the dish goes back to the time when Alexander the Great besieged Thebes. Food became so scarce that the Thebans cut what meat they had into little bits and rolled it in grape leaves, according to this NY Times article.
Of course, stuffed grape leaves are common throughout Turkey and the Middle East, but what makes stuffed vine leaves of Greece stand out is how it keeps it traditional. In Greece, they only use fresh, firm, springy grape leaves, and their filling is almost always spiced lamb, and only in Greece are they served with avgolemono sauce (hot chicken-broth and lemon based sauce).
Are you interested in making your own stuffed grape leaves? You don’t have to settle for the canned version, if you have access to young grape leaves, you can blanch them or boil them to have fresh, springy grape leaves of your own! Here is a complete recipe for a truly Greek Dolmathes!
If you are looking for some fresh, authentic Greek food, check out the Snack in SoHo of NYC. But for a really authentic experience, you must visit Greece!
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