Very close to Grandma's recipe! (She was from the southern part of Syria, while I found that Aleppo is exactly north.) I was pleased with these, and though I followed the recipe exactly, I plan to make a couple minor adjustments next time. I'm going to halve the pepper and increase the allspice by a half-teaspoon. Instead of soaking the rice, Grandma always mixed about 1/2 cup of water into the meat mixture with the dry rice. It gave some moisture for the rice to absorb, without extra prep or an overly tough middle. (She preferred her lamb ground coarsely for most flavor. Short-grain rice is also the traditional rice for stuffing grape leaves.) One more TIP is to use a smaller amount of filling, so that the raw amount is about the size of a short stubby pencil. The finished leaves will be the size of a child's marker. In this way they will be a lovely shape and you will use most of your jarred leaves. Finally, she never added garlic but I LOVED it in these! And next time I will remember to add the olives! I served with extra lemon, plain yogurt, and pita bread and thought I was back in time :)
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Very close to Grandma's recipe! (She was from the southern part of Syria, while I found that...