Put in grape leaves and use them to create fine dishes

Put in grape leaves and use them to create fine dishes

Grape leaves as a cooking ingredient

Grape leaves are not a typical ingredient in home cooking. But now many people have tried them in Mediterranean restaurants or during a vacation in Greece. One or the other got a taste of the green leaves. To enjoy the finely rolled dolmades more often, it doesn't always have to be an expensive visit to a restaurant. With simple recipes from the Internet and a few grape leaves, you can also conjure up delicious dishes at home.

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Buy or insert yourself?

If you don't have access to fresh grape leaves, you have to buy this ingredient in a supermarket. There the sheets are only offered in this country. However, if you have your own vine in the garden or know a vine owner, you are sitting directly at the fresh and free spring. But in summer it's not just about taking advantage of the hour and cooking with fresh grape leaves. It also means it's the right time to stock up on leaves for the rest of the year. The easiest way to do this is to insert it.

Suitable grape leaves

A vine sprouts countless leaves during the growing season. Depending on the region, the first leaves sprout from May when there is no fear of frost and temperatures rise. The vine adorns itself with its leaves until November, which then takes on a yellow color.

It is important to choose the tastiest leaves from this lavishly decorated leaf dress:

  • young leaves that are still tender
  • can be recognized by the lighter shade of green
  • are at the top of the shoots
  • should be about the size of a hand


Only use vine leaves from vines that have not been sprayed beforehand so that you do not ingest any harmful substances with them.

The best time to pickle

The insertion of the vine leaves can be combined with the summer cut. But it is also possible to use the leaves at any time. Picking the required amount does not harm the plant. When exactly the delicate green leaves appear depends on the current weather. Therefore it is said: be mindful and match the optimal timing. In the meantime, you can get some suitable glasses.

Recipe for pickled grape leaves

For a 500 ml glass you will need the following ingredients:

  • 60 grape leaves
  • 50 grams of salt
  • 250 ml of water
  • some cumin
  • possibly 4 cloves of garlic

You are welcome to fill several glasses with grape leaves and only need to increase the specified quantities accordingly.


  1. Remove all of the vine leaves from the stems.
  2. Heat water in a large saucepan.
  3. Add a serving of grape leaves as soon as the water boils.
  4. Blanch the leaves only briefly and then spread them out on kitchen paper and let them cool and dry.
  5. Blanch any remaining leaves as well.
  6. Place 5 sheets of paper on top of each other and roll them into a packet.
  7. Put the parcel in the jar. Add garlic if you like.
  8. Boil the water with the salt. Add some caraway seeds.
  9. Let the brine cool down before filling the glass with it.
  10. Store the tightly closed jar in a cool, dry place.


The brine keeps the pickled grape leaves for months. Individual packets can be removed from the jar for cooking as required. The only important thing is to take it out with a clean fork and then close the jar again immediately.

Conclusion for quick readers:

  • Edibility: Grape leaves are edible and a popular ingredient in Mediterranean cuisine
  • Freshness: Both fresh and pickled vine leaves can be used for cooking
  • Leaves supplier: Our own vine also supplies a lot of vine leaves for pickling
  • Suitable leaves: Palm-sized young leaves are tender; sit on the shoot tips and are lighter
  • Tip: Use only healthy leaves from unsprayed grapevines
  • Best time: From May on, leaves can be picked at any time; the summer pruning also provides many leaves
  • Recipe for a 0.5 l glass: 60 grape leaves, 50 grams of salt; 250 ml of water
  • Seasoning: a little cumin, 4 cloves of garlic
  • Step 1: Remove the stems from the leaves and briefly blanch in hot water in portions
  • Step 2: Spread the leaves to cool and let them dry; Lay 5 pieces on top of each other and roll up
  • Step 3: Put the packet of leaves in the glass and add the garlic cloves.
  • Step 4: Bring the water with salt and caraway seeds to the boil and then let cool down completely
  • Step 5: fill the glass with brine; close well and store in a cool, dry place
  • Shelf life: The salt in the brine keeps the vine leaves for months
  • Use: If necessary, individual packets of vine leaves can be removed for cooking with a clean fork

The garden journal freshness-ABC

How can fruit and vegetables be stored correctly so that they stay fresh as long as possible?

The garden journal freshness ABC as a poster:

  • Order here cheaply as an A3 print for your kitchen
  • as a free PDF file to print out yourself