Vegetarian dolma


(Makes 20)

Arabic Spice Mix

  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom

  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves

  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander

  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin

  • ½ teaspoon ground paprika

Tahini Yoghurt Sauce

  • ½ cup (---g) natural Greek-style yoghurt

  • 1 tablespoon tahini

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

  • ½ teaspoon finely grated garlic

  • ½ teaspoon salt

 Vegetarian Dolma

  • 24 large silverbeet leaves, washed

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 large brown onion, finely chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 1 ¼ cups (---g) basmati rice

  • 2 ½ teaspoons Arabic spice mix

  • 1 tomato, finely chopped

  • ¼ cup (---g) sultanas

  • ¼ cup (60ml) lemon juice

  • 2 ½ cups (625ml) hot vegetable stock

  • ¼ finely chopped dill

  • ¼ cup finely chopped coriander

  • ¼ cup finely chopped parsley

  • Salt, to taste

  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • Lemon wedges, to serve


STEP 1.    

To make the Arabic spice mix, combine all ingredients in a small jar with a lid. Shake to combine. Set aside.

STEP 2.    

To make the tahini yoghurt sauce, place all ingredients in a small bowl. Stir to combine. Cover and set aside.

STEP 3.    

To prepare silverbeet, heat a large pot of water and bring to the boil. Remove the thick stems of the silverbeet. Reserve three of the stems and finely chop. Set aside to use in the filling. In a triangular cut, remove the thick vein on the bottom of the leaves. Place leaves in the boiling water for 20 seconds to blanch. Transfer to a bowl of icy water. Drain and put aside.

STEP 4.    

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium to high heat. Add the onion and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally until softened.

STEP 5.    

Stir in the rice and cook for about 3 minutes to cook out the starch. Add 2 ½ teaspoons of the Arabic spice mix, reserved chopped silverbeet stems and tomato. Cook, stirring for a further minute.

STEP 6.    

Stir in the sultanas, 2 tablespoons of the lemon juice and 2 cups of stock. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally for 10 minutes or until all the liquid is absorbed and rice is almost cooked through. Transfer to a bowl. Set aside to cool. Stir in the dill, coriander and parsley. Season with salt.

STEP 7.    

Pre-heat oven to 160°C. To assemble, one by one, place heaped tablespoons of mixture into the centre of 20 of the silverbeet. Fold in the side edges and roll to enclose.

STEP 8.    

Line the base of a medium baking pan with the remaining silverbeet leaves. Place the dolmas over the leaves in two rows. Pour over remaining lemon juice, stock and olive oil.

STEP 9.    

Cook for 20-25 minutes or until rice is fully cooked through. 

STEP 10. 

Transfer dolmas to a serving plate. Serve with the tahini yoghurt sauce.


  • Use a premium grade basmati rice for best results

  • Herbs are chopped very finely and firmly packed

  • You can use 1 cup of Aborio rice in place of the basmati rice