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the appetizer:

Greece is a meeting place between East and West, its cuisine mixing classical Mediterranean cooking with "oriental" influences from the Middle East. Greek food remains true to its roots, like ancient philosopher Epicurus' dictum to "live well and enjoy the simple things in life."

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Greece

Stuffed Grape Leaves (Dolmathes)

2 bottles grape leaves, rinsed well
1/2 cup olive oil
1 large onion, grated
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup cooked white rice
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1/2 cup currants
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Place oil in a large pot and saute the onions until soft. Add the garlic and stir for a minute. Add remaining ingredients.

Place 1 teaspoon of the mixture in the middle of a grape leaf, shiny side down, and fold securely. Complete filling. Place lettuce leaves or extra grape leaves in the bottom of a large skillet. Place stuffed grape leaves on top, folded side down. Sprinkle with a little water and cover skillet with a plate. Cook over low heat for one hour. Serve at room temperature.

 

Greece

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