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Stuffed Vine Leaves

Heat the olive oil in a pan, add the onions and cook gently to soften but not brown. Crumble in the pork, cook gently for 5 minutes or until the pork has coloured. Stir in the tomatoes, parsley, mint, cinnamon and rice. Season well and cook for a few minutes more.

Have ready a stack of the vine leaves, vein side up, the pork mixture and a shallow circular ovenproof dish ready to put the dolmades in.

To form koupepia place 1 tsp of the filling up from the centre base of the leaf, fold the leaf over the mince from the base then fold in the left and right side of the leaf. Now roll up, not too tightly, to make a little cigar shape.

Continue making until all the koupepia are packed in the dish. Squeeze on the lemon juice and cover with any remaining vine leaves, like a blanket. Place an inverted plate on top of the vine leaves. Carefully pour boiling water in around the edge of the dish to come up to just touch the plate. Cover with foil, cook in a preheated oven 200°C /Gas 6 for 30 minutes, then reduce the heat to 180°C/Gas 4 and cook for a further 30 minutes. Serve warm or cold.

 

Source: Cyprus Tourism Organisation

Recipe

Bean Soup with Smoked Pork Knee

The cuisine of northern Slovakia is influenced by the harsh climatic conditions of the area, where it is usually intensively cold at least three months per year. This is one of the reasons why smoked meat, potatoes, sauerkraut, dairy products and pulses are typical for this cuisine. In Slovakia, the pulses belong to the oldest cultivated crops. The most famous dish, still popular of the Slovak kitchen, is the bean soup, which used to be part of the Christmas Eve dinner for many families.

Ingredients

  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 1 kg coarsely minced pork
  • 400 g can of chopped tomatoes
  • ½ bunch parsley, finely chopped
  • a handful of dried Cypriot mint, crumbled
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 200 g pudding rice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 bunch of fresh vine leaves, destalked (or use canned leaves in brine, drained)
  • juice of 1 lemon

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