Yalantzi Dolmathes

"Yalantzi is driven from Turkish "yalanci" which means fake. Yalantzi dolma(de)s are meant to be made without meat and served at room temp. This is popular in the coastal regions of pan Ottoman cultures where cold olive oil dishes are consumed daily. This version was found in recipesfromscratch.com"
photo by breezermom photo by breezermom
photo by breezermom
photo by Jostlori photo by Jostlori
photo by LifeIsGood photo by LifeIsGood
Ready In:
1hr 30mins
30 dolmades




  • In a heavy 10" to 12" skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil over a moderate heat until a light haze forms above it.
  • Add the onions & cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until they are soft & transparent but not brown.
  • Add the rice & stir constantly for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the grains are coated with oil (Do not let them brown).
  • Pour in the water, add the salt & a few grindings of pepper & bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Reduce the heat to low, cover tightly, & simmer for about 15 minutes, or until the rice is tender & has absorbed all the liquid.
  • In a small skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the remaining olive oil & in it cook the pine nuts until they are a delicate brown.
  • Add them to the rice, then stir in the currants. In a large pot, bring 2 quarts of water to a boil over high heat.
  • Drop in the grape leaves and immediately turn off the heat.
  • Let the leaves soak for 1 minute, then drain them in a sieve and plunge them into a bowl or pan of cold water to cool them quickly.
  • Gently separate the leaves and spread them, dull sides up, on paper towels to drain.
  • Layer the bottom of a heavy 2 to 3 quart casserole with 10 of the leaves. Stuff each of the remaining 30 leaves with about 1 tablespoon of the rice mixture.
  • Stack the stuffed leaves, side by side and seam sides down, in layers in the casserole and sprinkle them with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and the cold water.
  • Place the casserole over high heat for 3 minutes, reduce the heat to low and simmer, tightly covered, for 50 minutes.
  • Uncover and cool to room temperature.
  • To serve, arrange the stuffed grape leaves attractively on a platter or individual plates and garnish with lemon wedges.

Questions & Replies

default avatar
Got a question? Share it with the community!


  1. Jostlori
    Yum, yum! These were soooo good! We like ours served warm, so didn't wait for them to cool off! And, we like them with avgolemono over the top. Delicious! Will definitely be making these again and again! Thanks for posting...
  2. LifeIsGood
    Wow! The taste was amazing. This will go into my best of the best cookbook. Making these took a bit of time (not hard at all), but it was so worth it. I love the pine nuts and rice combo. The finished product is just delicious. I squeezed some of the fresh lemon over the top. I admit to having one before it was cooled, and really liked it hot too! Note: My filling only made enough for about 15 stuffed grape leaves. Thank you for posting! Made for ZWT9 and the Soup-A-Stars
  3. Annacia
    I had everything on hand that this recipe ask for and I finally used the jar of grape leaves that have been on the shelf for a loooong time. I've not had Dolmathes since I lived not too far from a Greek market that had a deli years ago. I used to get small finger sized ones with a rice mix filling. They were very similar to to this recipe except they were kept cool. I guess they had to in the store, anyway, I liked this recipe very much and might be buying another jar of grape leaves but it won't stay on the shelf as long as this one did. Made for ZWT 9.
  4. breezermom
    Delicious! I enjoyed them cold with cucumber raita. Made for CQ4. Thanks for sharing!!
  5. Random Rachel
    I really didn't care for these cold, and most of them fell apart while cooking - probably because it was my first time making dolmathes, and I had no idea of how to wrap the leaves. Hopefully they hold together better next time I make them. For ZWT9 family picks.



Find More Recipes