Our good friends at FoodCycle are working on an e-book filled with delicious, homely recipes that people love to cook for friends and family. We have been invited to contribute and celebrate food as the amazing way it can bring people together. We grew up in Turkey where pretty much anything that can be stuffed is stuffed. From grape vine leaves, beef tomatoes and bell peppers to cabbage or onions, home cooks use various techniques to create their own version. For us, it’s all about practicality. Stuffing is a great way to make use of your left-over rice or greens and vegetables that would otherwise not be sufficient for a whole dish on their own. Below is a quick and easy way of stuffing inspired by the recipes used in the Ottoman Palace. You can prepare the stuffing in advance, eat hot or cold. It’s family as well as environmentally friendly.
Wash your rice with warm water thoroughly and drain. Add rice and lemon juice on your cooked onions and pine nuts. Stir well. Pour 1 coffee mug of boiled water into the pot. Amount of water to rice should always be one to one. Meaning, if you are cooking 2 coffee mugs of rice, add 2 coffee mugs of boiled water. Cover your saucepan, bring up to a full boil and then reduce the heat to a very low temperature and simmer. Your pilaf will be ready in roughly about 20 minutes when all the water is absorbed. Try not to open the lid too many times while you are cooking or smush the rice to check if there is any water left. Instead, watch the steam coming out of your pot as it will reduce over time.