Lahanodolmades’ We set about making a #takemytogreece evening for a beautiful Grecian...' />

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Greek inspired Cabbage Rolls

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If you like Dolmades, you’re likely to enjoy Lahanodolmades’

We set about making a #takemytogreece evening for a beautiful Grecian inspired dinner event with a number of guests. We went about re-arranging and removing furniture to create a rustic Grecian theme about the dining area – from framed photos in baby blue from the Greek Islands, Anemone flowers as the table center piece, to having baskets of fresh lemons and olive branches scattered ornamentally.. to menus in Greek and food inspired by traditional Greek culture. It was our very own ‘instant restaurant’, from the theme right down to the pressure to have everything ready in a timely fashion. First up – we needed to make the ‘Lahanodolmades’ – a vegetarian cabbage roll version. WELL. We made our Greek inspired cabbage rolls, with cabbage leaves – because it’s not like you can just stroll into the green grocer or the supermarket and buy fresh vine leaves.. noo, you can’t (at least not where we are). It took almost a week to discover and I will forever regret the stupidity – a true face palm moment. We have copious grape vines along our back boundary fence, and as we were pruning and composting almost that week later, it dawned on me – I could have used the vine leaves for our dinner at the weekend. 

So, following that idiocy, who would have thought a big plate of cabbage rolls would be a hit when hosting guests? We did… and we do! They’re a great “make ahead”, make little mess and won’t leave your guests hungry.


3 medium savoy cabbages
3 C brown rice
2 large lemons (rind and juice)
1 bunch fresh parsley, roughly chopped
½ tsp. chilli powder
Salt & pepper to taste
1 onion
1 garlic clove
½ cup raw pine nut (optional for nut-free)


Remove the outer cabbage leaves and cut out thick stalk at the base of each cabbage leaf, leaving an upside down ‘V’ shape where the thickest section of stalk once was. Rinse the cabbage leaves.
Place the cabbage leaves in a steamer – make sure that the water in the pot does not touch the bottom of the steamer basket, bring the water to a simmer first and then add cabbage leaves. Steam until stalks are pliable – approximately 5 minutes. Once cooked place the cabbage leaves on to a towel to soak up moisture.
Add the rice and 6 cups of water to a large pot (or use a rice cooker). Bring to a rolling boil, stirring occasionally until the rice is tender and just cooked. Drain ¾ of any remaining water in the pot of rice and add the juice and rind of 2 lemons, chopped parsley bunch, chilli, salt and pepper. Combine ingredients and return to a low heat.
Dice the onion finely and crush the garlic. Sweat for approximately 5 minutes on high heat with a continuous stir. Once the onion is translucent, lower the heat and add the pine nuts. Season with salt and pepper. Add onion and pine nuts to the rice mixture and combine.
Preheat oven to 180 (200 for conventional oven) degrees Celsius. Line 2 medium sized, or 1 large oven tray with baking paper.
Take 1 cabbage leaf, add a heaped spoonful of the rice mixture to the middle of the cabbage leaf. Starting from the V where we’ve cut the stalk out, fold in both edges. Fold in either side – just like you’re wrapping a present, and then continue to roll tucking in any hanging sides as you go.
Repeat, until all the mixture is rolled into cabbage leaves.
Bake at 180 (200 conventional oven) for 15-20 minutes or until edges are starting to brown.
Serve warm or cold with extra lemon wedges or 1Food’s roasted capsicum dip!
Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 days or freeze for later use.