Recently I was excited to discover a grape vine hanging along the northern fence line of the farm only to realise that wild grapes are common in North America and there are at least a dozen such plants in various spots around the Hendrick Farm development site.
I’m still stoked to have discovered another wild harvest and although the grapes are months away, late spring and early summer is apparently the time to pick and preserve grape leaves so they can be stuffed and turned into delicious dolmades. A little internet research turned up a myriad of ways to prepare them:
- Fresh – Blanch in brine then use.
- Freezing (raw) – Pack fresh into bags for minimum of 2 months freezer storage before use.
- Freezing (blanched) – Blanch in brine then freeze.
- Pickling – Blanched then pickled.
- Lacto-fermentation – Marinate then let ferment in brine.
After picking about 200 leaves I tossed some into the freezer raw and canned a mason jar full with plans to harvest again and set a couple of jars fermenting in the coming weeks. Bring on the dolmas!
Illustration from Vintage Printable at Swivelchair Media