To find grape leaves, your best option is to locate them in the international aisle. Throughout history, grape leaves have been used across the world to wrap meat and rice dishes. Their purpose is to serve as a vessel or a textural component.
They are usually available mid-summer through early winter, although this depends on which region you’re buying them in. There are several dishes you can make with the help of grape leaves, so we’re going to cover a few just for you.
We’re also going to include various substitutes considering grape leaves can be stubborn to find. A neat point about grape leaves is they’re incredibly healthy for you, which is why this article covers three remarkable health factors of grape leaves; let’s dive in!
What Are Some Benefits Of Eating Grape Leaves
Grape Leaves Reduce Inflammation
Grape leaves aren’t just beautiful works of nature that taste good; they’re also great for providing a natural remedy for inflammation. Grape leaves contain lots of omega-3, which is essential for managing mast cells and how they react to inflammatory signals.
They’re Great For Digestion
To have a stable and healthy gut, you must have enough fiber intake each day. Grape leaves are packed full of fiber, which will make your stool move along faster and without consequence. A diet that is deficient in fiber can cause constipation, bloating, and more.
They Prevent Anemia
Grape leaves can also reduce and even prevent anemia by offering the mineral iron. Iron is liable for producing red blood cells, which are necessary to transport oxygen throughout our body. Anemia can cause hair loss, heart disease, and more.
What Are Some Substitutes For Grape Leaves?
Canned Grape Leaves
Canned grape leaves are the obvious choice here. They may even be easier to find in your local grocery store. You can expect canned grape leaves to have a little less flavor, though. Despite this, they are great to use when fresh grape leaves are unavailable!
Bay leaves are delicious but cannot be used as well for stuffers or wraps as they’re much smaller in size. The taste makes them worthwhile to add to various recipes, such as chicken stir fry, seared steak, and more. They also pair well with most recipes that call for grape leaves.
Oak leaves aren’t exactly the first thing you think of when searching for an alternative, but they’re great as a substitute! The taste isn’t bad; it’s just a little bland. However, the texture is excellent, and it’s very healthy for you.
A very popular way to use grape leaves is by utilizing them as meat wraps. A great way to do this is by wrapping small cuts of pork, such as diced pork, with a little fregola mixed in. You can also wrap seared steak, which is incredibly tasty.
Stuffed Grape Leaves
Grape leaves are large, thick, and perfect candidates to be used as stuffers. You may discover that stuffing them with cheese, lettuce, and something just a little spicy, such as red pepper works excellent as a breakfast stuffer. They’re also phenomenal to stuff with brown rice!
Vegan Grape Suffers
Grape leaves are great with meat, but they’re also delicious when put together as a vegan stuffer. The most popular way is by adding dry fruits, such as raisins, dried figs, goji berries, and cherries! This is also a really easy way to get plenty of fiber if eaten daily.
Grape leaves are super versatile; for starters, Dolmas is a popular dish in which grape leaves are stuffed with ingredients, including rice and veggies. You can experiment with sea-food dishes and grape leaves.
For instance, you can prepare bluefish with grape leaves. Other popular dishes include stuffed grape leaves with pork and fregola. In short, you can use grape leaves with all kinds of ingredients. You can also prepare sweet dishes from it, such as Turkish stuffed grape leaves.