Cuisine: Middle Eastern
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 1 jar grape leaves
  • 2 lbs. zucchini with insides scooped out
  • 2 cups Egyptian rice or short grain rice, washed & soaked in cold water for at
  • least 30 minutes
  • 1 pound ground lean beef (or lamb or mixture of both)
  • 3 t. salt
  • 2 t. 7 spice or allspice
  • 1½ tsp. black pepper
  • 1 t. cinnamon
  • 4 T. olive oil
  • 2 T. chopped parsley
  • 2 T. dried mint
  • 10 large tomatoes diced
  • Juice from 1 or 2 lemons
  • 1 t. tomato paste
  • 2 lbs. lamb chops
  • Spices for lamb:
  • 2 t. cardamom powder, 2 t. black pepper, 1 t. cinnamon. 1 t. allspice, salt and pepper.
  1. Wash grape leaves and soak in boiling water for 10 minutes until soft and very pliable for stuffing and rolling.
  2. Mix the stuffing: rice, meat, salt, pepper, cinnamon, oil, parsley & mint.
  3. Stuff Kussa and grape leaves and roll leaves. Season lamb chops
  4. Place 1 T. olive oil on bottom of a large pot, place seasoned lamb chops, on bottom of the pot as to form a single layer, place sliced tomatoes on bottom of a large pot.
  5. Place stuffed Kussa directly on top, and side by side, so there is little space between them.
  6. Next, place stuffed grape leaves on top of Kussa so they are aligned side by side with hardly any space to ensure the rolled leaves do not open.
  7. Place a round, glass baking dish on top to ensure Kussa and stuffed leaves are held tightly together and to bottom of pot. Cook on low heat for 30 minutes.
  8. Add about boiling water until the water just rises above the very top layer in pot; bring to boil on medium high heat then cover, then lower heat and simmer for 2 hours.
  9. Add lemon juice and 1 t. tomato paste. Allow to simmer on very low heat for another hour until there is about ¼-cup water left in pot.
  10. Turn off heat. Let pot cool for 30 minutes and remove glass baking dish from top of Kussa and cooked grape leaves.
  11. Turn whole pot onto a serving dish and serve with cucumber and yogurt salad.
Recipe by From Scratch at