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Old June 18, 2018   #35
leshachikha
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Location: Philadelphia, PA
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I make these dolma-like things every week in the summer and into the fall when my eggplants are going crazy. They can be grilled, fried, or baked. They're also easy to make vegetarian, are surprisingly "meaty"/filling, and freeze very well.

Eggplant Collard Rolls
* 1 medium Italian eggplant or equivalent in Japanese eggplants
* 1 yellow onion
* 1/2 head of garlic
* 1 c. herbs: mint, parsley, dill, or combination of whatever you like
* 1/2 c. chopped walnuts
* 2 lemons, zest and juice
* 1 c. cooked brown rice
* 2 eggs
* 1 block sirene cheese (aka Bulgarian feta/Bulgarian white cheese in brine) or regular feta
* About 40 large collard green leaves
* Chicken or vegetable broth

1. Saute eggplant.
Finely dice the eggplant and onion. Mince the garlic. Saute in olive oil with generous salt and pepper until just softened. Remove from heat.

2. Make filling.
Mix cooked eggplant/onion with minced herbs, finely chopped walnuts, rice, zest and juice of the lemons, and chopped cheese. Taste and adjust seasoning-- needs to be very salty to stand up to the greens. Add more olive oil if necessary. Then add 2 beaten eggs and mix well.

3. Prepare collards.
Bring a shallow saucepan of broth to a simmer. Blanch collard leaves a few at a time until very bright green and supple-- only should take about 10 seconds each. Cut the inflexible central ribs out of each leaf.

4. Make the "dolma."
Lay a leaf down on your work space. If it has any holes or is very small, you may need to use two. Put ~2 1/2 tbs of filling in the center of the leaf. Fold the sides over the filling, then the top down, and then roll tightly down towards the bottom to make a short, fat cylinder.

The moisture of the leaves should make them sticky and hold them tightly closed, but if you're having any trouble you can always thread the rolls onto skewers.

5. Cook the rolls.
You can fry these on the stovetop in butter and olive oil with onions until the greens are slightly golden. Or you can butter a dish and bake them at 375F for 25 minutes (perhaps topping with more cheese and olive oil). Or you can put them on skewers, brush them with oil, and grill.

6. Serve the rolls.
I like to serve them with a lemony-herby yogurt sauce, but they're good plain too.

Last edited by leshachikha; June 18, 2018 at 02:11 PM.
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