Dolmas & Cashew Tzatziki Recipe

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Inflammation. It’s a buzzword that many of us often hear in the health world, and there's a good reason for that.

Low-grade inflammation is associated with many chronic diseases, such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, chronic kidney disease, and arthritis. Many people experience inflammation to varying degrees, and it can often exist as a low hum of discomfort buzzing in the background of your well-being. Its existence in your body can often mean that it’s paving the way for chronic diseases to take hold of your physical health.

Inspired by the traditional Greek cuisine, this version of dolmas aims to pack an extra punch of inflammation-fighting goodness. Each ingredient provides minerals and vitamins that are particularly healing and helpful for purging toxins from the body. 

Plus, they’re fun to make — and even more fun to eat! 

Ingredients

  • 5-6 large swiss chard leaves
  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 celery stalk, large, chopped
  • ¼ white or yellow onion, large, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, large, chopped
  • ½ cup quinoa
  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice, (about 1 lemon)
  • 3 tbsp. fresh dill, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp. fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp. fresh mint, finely chopped
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked for 2 hours
  • 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tbsp. fresh dill
  • 1/2 cup cucumber, seeded and grated

Instructions

1. To prepare the chard leaves, wash thoroughly and remove the stems. With your knife, cut along either side of the “spine,” making sure not to remove too much of the leaf itself. If the narrow top of the stem seems slightly flexible, don’t worry about removing it.

2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and, using tongs, quickly blanch each leaf one at a time for 10 seconds. Lay them on a clean kitchen towel to drain. Make sure to pat dry before assembly. Set aside.

3. To prepare the filling, place the celery, garlic, and onion in a food processor and pulse to a fine dice. Heat coconut oil over medium heat, add the mixture and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the uncooked quinoa and sauté with the mixture for about 2 minutes, coating the quinoa. Add water and lemon juice. Bring to a boil then turn to a low simmer. Cover and let quinoa cook for about 15-20 minutes until it is soft and fluffy. Remove from heat and mix in the dill, parsley, and mint. Set aside to slightly cool while you prepare the chard leaves.

4. For assembly, cut each leaf to roughly 3.5” x 4.5”. They can be slightly bigger or smaller, but use this measurement as a guideline. Larger leaves will produce about 5 portions; smaller leaves will produce 2-3 portions. Scoop 1 tbsp. of quinoa filling onto the cut chard leaf toward the center. Fold the bottom of the leaf up over the quinoa, and then bring both sides in towards the center and roll up toward the top, keeping the leaf taught but not so much that it tears.

5. Place in a container with the seam side down. Repeat with remaining rolls. Once all the rolls are complete, drizzle them with the olive oil and sprinkle with salt if you wish.

6. To prepare the cashew cream sauce, place the soaked cashews, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, turmeric, salt and water in a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. Place in a bowl and mix in the cucumber and dill. Serve with the chard rolls and enjoy!

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Tags: Healthy Eating, Healthy Recipes, Vegan Recipes

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Written By

April Jackson

April Jackson is a Los Angeles native with a diverse creative career and a love for holistic culinary nutrition. See Full Bio

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