And if you're like me, at some point you decide it's time to make your own at home, never mind whether it's a big batch or not. So you start researching recipes. That's when the disappointment begins. The time and effort that will be expended on this simple finger food seems all out of whack. My guess is that this out-of-whackness stems from some sort of need for tradition and authenticity. I've written about that irksome word, authenticity, before.
2 - 3 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1/2 yellow onion, diced
2 - 3 cloves garlic, diced
2 cups cooked rice
1 large lemon, juiced
1 large handful mint & parsley, chopped
salt and pepper
Minute 1: Pick several large dock leaves in front yard. Put pot of water on the boil.
Minute 3: Dice leftover onion half.
Minute 4: Chop two cloves of garlic.
Minute 5: Blanche five dock leaves one at a time for 30 seconds each; remove to paper towels, careful not to tear leaves.
Minute 8: Add a couple tablespoons of olive oil to skillet over medium heat. Sweat onions and garlic.
Minute 9: Pick large handful of parsley and mint from herb garden. Chop together.
Minute 11: Add two cups of leftover white rice to skillet. Stir together, then kill heat.
Minute 12: Squeeze large lemon, about 1/4 cup juice, and add to skillet. Add herbs. Season with salt and pepper, plus more olive oil if necessary. Stir well.
Minute 14: Begin wrapping dock leaves with rice mixture. Use burrito technique, folding over two spoonfuls of rice and tucking corners before rolling up.
Minute 18: Arrange dolmas on plate. Drizzle with olive oil and a sprinkling of course sea salt.
As for the dock, it's a weed, no doubt very nutritious. You've all seen it before. Genus Rumex. Lots of different species, some more sour (curly dock), some more bitter (broad-leaved dock). The idea for making dolma wrappers came out of the blue. I've been watching this weed in my front yard for a couple weeks now, marveling at its rapid growth, when it occurred to me that the leaves would make good wrappers.