Stuffed Beet Greens


24 large beet leaves, rinsed
1 large egg
1 pound ground veal
1/2 cup unseasoned bread crumbs
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill leaves
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups chicken broth
1 garlic clove, minced or pressed
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons lemon juice


1. Cut off the beet green stems at the base of the leaves and discard. Place the leaves in a large bowl. Pour on enough boiling water to cover the leaves by 1 inch and allow them to stand for 5 minutes. Pour off the water and transfer the leaves to an absorbent kitchen towel. Pat dry.

2. Generously butter a large skillet. In a mixing bowl, beat the egg, then add the veal. Stir to combine. Blend in the bread crumbs, dill leaves, lemon zest, allspice, salt, and pepper. Take up by tablespoonfuls and shape into 24 cylinders. Place each cylinder on a beet leaf near the stem end and roll up, tucking in the sides to form a neat bundle. Place, seam side down, in the prepared skillet. Pour on the chicken broth and add the garlic. Cover the pan and cook at a gentle bubble for 30 minutes.

3. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the stuffed beet leaves to a serving platter. Increase the heat under the skillet and cook the liquid until it is reduced to ½ cup. Remove from the heat. Blend the flour into the sour cream and stir into the reduced liquid. Add the lemon juice and return to the heat. Cook, stirring, until slightly thickened. Pour over the stuffed leaves to serve.


Serves 4

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