Healthy Lifestyle Ideas

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Stuffed Grape Leaves

I was trimming my grape vines this past weekend and my hubby suggested that I take the discarded leaves and make stuffed grape leaves. I'd never made them before and found a recipe on . It turned out delicious and wasn't too difficult to make.  Look how big the grape leaves were. This one's on a dinner size plate.

The recipe called for long grain rice so I used my rice cooker and cooked it with chicken broth. I then separately sauteed chopped onion, along with dill, lemon, mint leaves and olive oil and combined it with the jasmine rice.
Rolling the rice up in the grape leaf took a little practice. My main problem was putting too much rice in the grape leaf, so some of my first attempts are lose, but they held pretty well when I put them in the pan to cook. You just cover the rolled, stuffed leaves with chicken broth and simmer.  

They were so flavorful and my hubby and kids loved them. The leftovers were even better the next day.  I'll post the recipe under my recipe tab and I'll definitely be making these again.

The Ducklings Look Almost Full Grown at 5 Weeks

Wow they change quickly. Above is a picture of them at 4 weeks and then below where they're almost 5 weeks old.
They've still got a little duckling fuss on their backs so I know they're not full grown yet. I keep them in their cage when I can't be outside with them. I try to go out at least 3 times a day, starting with a morning visit to replenish their water and chick starter food and to clean out their cage. They follow me everywhere and are  very nervous about leaving to go forage on their own. If I sit down, they sit too, so I usually walk them around the yard, showing them what I want them to eat (lots of yummy weeds).  I can tell they still feel vulnerable and at this age I'm mainly concerned that a cat might get one of them so I never leave them unprotected.

Each day I walk them down to the pond at the back of our property, but so far they don't seem interested in getting in the water. So I fill up a large plastic container with water and let them swim and wash twice a day.

The smaller duck (the female I'm guessing) is very affectionate. If I sit on the ground, she'll eventually come over and let me pet her. She also likes to climb up in my lap. The larger one (male?) is not as affectionate, but he will climb in my lap too if he sees her do it.

 I'll have to decide on names soon. I thought I'd wait until I'm sure about the genders. I'll know if one's a drake if a tail feather curls. As soon as I know for sure, it's naming time!