Stuffed Grape Leaves – Cooking the Filling

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 21,682
    Cookbook author, cooking instructor and culinary consultant Amy Riolo demonstrates how to cook the filling for stuffed grape leaves.

    Amy Riolo: Hi, I am Amy Riolo and today I am working with Chef Jordan from Cafe 8 and we are going to be making stuffed grape leaves. So now we are going to show you how to make the filling for our grape leaves.

    The first thing that Chef Jordan is doing is he has added olive oil to a heated pan and he is coating the bottom of the pan over medium heat. Then he is adding the onions and a little pinch of salt, just to kind of let the onions get soft to help them release some of their liquid and then he is going to add the pine nuts as soon as the onions are soft. As he adds the pine nuts, he is turning to coat them and then he is really going to keep an eye on them and make sure that they turn light brown but not much darker than light brown.

    With nuts you have to be very careful. If you leave them once they start to brown they can really burn quickly on you. So he is just turning them to coat and let them get golden and then he has added black pepper and all spice. As soon as they began to release their aroma, you know that they are toasted. He is stirring them to incorporate.

    Chef Jordan: Smell it and you know it's toasting, a little bit of tomato paste.

    Amy Riolo: Now he is adding the rice and stirring and he is also going to add in the mint and currants. Chef Jordan: Now we have taken it off the heat because basically the rice cooks itself in the water, in the grape leaves. There are just the actual initial flavorings, and that's ready basically for stuffing.