This recipe was featured in VEGETARIAN TIMES on January 2, 2012.
Armenian stuffed grape leaves (derevi sarma or yalanchi) are a Middle Eastern favorite — and widely popular as appetizers, snacks, or even as an addition on the perfect mezze platter. When it comes to preparing stuffed grape leaves, most Armenian families, chefs and restaurants have their own unique recipes. Grape leaves are a beloved dish, made flavorful with onions, rice, parsley, tomatoes, currants, pine nuts, and seasonings, including mint, dill, paprika, allspice, and lemon juice. If you like stuffed grape leaves, you’ll appreciate this simple casserole from Vegetarian Times, which has all the flavor and taste of the popular appetizers without the labor-intensive rolling. Jarred grape leaves are available in any Middle Eastern market or specialty store. (You do not need to parboil jarred grape leaves, but a quick dip in boiling water tenderizes them and removes some of their saltiness.)
30 jarred or fresh grape leaves
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing top of casserole
1 large onion, finely diced (about 2 cups)