Warak Inab is a traditional Middle Eastern dish that goes way back in history. It’s not a difficult dish to cook, but rather one that entails time and love to tailor each roll into perfection. It’s something to cook for your loved ones. Best served with yogurt!
- 1/2 kilo vine leaves, cleaned and inserted in boiling water for one minute
- 2 1/2 cups rice
- 1/2 kilo minced meat
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 cup oil
- 1/2 kilo beef fillet
- 1/2 kilo small zucchini
- Juice of 3 to 4 lemons
- In a pan with a little oil, fry the meat fillet until two sides golden but not fully cooked. Season with salt and pepper. Add one liter hot water. Leave to simmer for one hour.
- Meanwhile, mix rice, minced meat, salt, pepper, water and oil in a large bowl.
- Open the vine leaves on a board one at a time. Put half of the mixture on each, fold in 2 sides then roll like a small cigar. Repeat till you finish all the leaves.
- Cut off the zucchini stalks, then slice off the dried tips at the opposite ends without removing too much flesh. Carefully hollow out the zucchini from the stalk end by pushing and turning a manakra into the flesh. The tool will remove thin fingers of flesh at a time; keep hollowing until you have a generous cavity.
- Stuff the zucchini with remaining mixture.
- Remove the meat fillet from the cooking water. Save meat stalk for later.
- Arrange the meat fillet in the bottom of a saucepan, followed by the stuffed zucchini, then put all the stuffed vine leaves on top, cover with the meat stalk prepared earlier. Add lemon juice and salt to taste. Use a plate to fit inside the saucepan as a lid, to stop the vine leaves from opening during the cooking process.
- Cook on slow heat for 1 hour or till the leaves are well cooked.
A dish that requires some patience, but is totally worth it! I’ll be posting the red tomato version soon! Stay tuned!