Once again our crew was in Toronto and had the honor of meeting up with Celebrity Guest Chef Sonia. For this visit, she was preparing one of her world class recipes, Armenian stuffed grape leaves, also known as Sarma. Though it seemed like a challenging recipe, she made the preparation with ease and the final product was amazing. We had to share the recipe with our readers.
• 1 1/2 lbs. ground lamb or beef (not lean)
• 1/2 cup rice or bulghour, or a combination
• 1/4 cup green bell pepper [chopped fine]
• 1/4 cup Armenian or Italian parsley [chopped]
• Cayenne pepper to taste
• 1 teaspoon basil
• 1 teaspoon black pepper or to taste
• 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
• 1 medium yellow onion [chopped]
•Combine the above ingredients and knead into a dough. A little water may be added to ease the blending.
• Grape leaves or Cabbage
• 1 cup water or 1 can Swanson’s® chicken broth or beef broth
• 8 oz crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce
• 1/4 cup lemon juice
• Take a large teaspoonfull of the filling and place on the grape leaf and roll up turning in the ends. Take a few of the large tougher leaves and line the bottom of a covered casserole. Place the rolled grape leaves side by side and layer upon layer. Pour over the crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce, lemon juice and broth or 1 cup of water. Cover and cook in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 1 hour. Try this dish with a large dollop of plain yogurt or sour cream on top.