Lamb Dolma

with preserved lemon, smoked eggplant kefir

Makes 60-20 dolmas

500g Lamb mince
½ cup uncooked Long grain rice
¼ cup Extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp Fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
2 tbsp Dried currants
2 tbsp pine nuts
1 tsp Ground cumin
1 tsp Ground cinnamon
1 tsp Dried oregano
1 packet Vine leaves in brine (sourced from international grocer or health food store)
1 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 Lemon
2 cups Salt-reduced chicken stock
2 cups Water


1. In a large bowl add: lamb mince, rice, 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, mint, currants, pine nuts, cumin, cinnamon and oregano; mix together until well incorporated.

2. Gently unroll vine leaves and rinse well under cold running water, pat each leaf dry with paper towel. Lay each vine leaf flat on a clean and dry work surface, ready for rolling.

3. Place a rounded table spoon of lamb mixture near the bottom centre of the vine leaf, fold the bottom of the leaf over the lamb mixture, folder over the sides and roll toward the top of the leaf to form a firm cylinder shape. Continue this step until all vine leaves are filled and rolled.

4. Place the rolled dolmas into a deep baking tray, smeared with 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil (leave enough space between each dolma to allow for expansion.

5. Drizzle lemon juice over the dolmas and place a large plate or tray on top to weight down the dolmas when cooking; leaving a corner uncovered.

6. Pour chicken stock and water into the baking dish via the uncovered corner.

7. Place he baking dish over a medium heat and bring to a simmer. Reduce to a low heat and cook for 30 minutes, or until all liquid has been absorbed. By nice the rice inside the dolmas should be tender.

8. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.

Smoked Eggplant Kefir

3 large eggplants
Zest of 1 Lemon
1 tsp Ground cumin
1 cup Blue Bay Kefir
½ bunch Continental parsley, finely chopped
Salt flakes to taste

Preheat oven to 200C


1. Roast eggplants over and open gas flame to char and blister the skin, turning with tongs to ensure even charring.

2. Transfer charred eggplants to an oven tray and bake until the eggplants have softened and flesh has cooked and collapsed; approximately 15-20 minutes.

3. Remove from oven and allow eggplants to cool slightly.

4. While still warm, gently removed the blackened,/charred skin form the eggplant and discard.

5. Place the eggplant flesh into a food processor and add ground cumin, lemon zest, kefir and chopped parsley. Blitz until a smooth purée constancy is created, season to taste.

To Serve

Garnish with tasted pine nuts, died currants, kefir labneh and a olive oil drizzle.