Armenian zeitov dolma

Zeitov Dolma Delight: A Culinary Ode to Armenian Tradition

Savor the essence of Armenian cuisine with our Zeitov Dolma recipe, a vegetarian delight that spotlights the robust flavors of oil-infused eggplant. With every bite, experience the succulence of eggplant complemented by a medley of tantalizing spices. This Armenian classic, rich in heritage and taste, is a culinary journey that transcends borders and leaves a lingering symphony of flavors on your palate.

Prep Time: 
30 minutes Cook Time: 30 minutes | Total Time: 1 hour
Course: Main Dish | Cuisine: Mediterranean | Servings: 6


  •  25 dried eggplants
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup lemon
  • 2 chopped onions
  • 1.5 tsp tomato paste
  • 1.5 cup Egyptian rice
  • 1.5 tsp pepper paste
  • 1 cup chopped parsley
  • 2 chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp red pepper
  • 1 tbsp dried mint
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 cup sesame paste (tahini)


 1. Boil dried eggplants in salty water for about 5 minutes. Then, gently place them on another pan with cold water for 2 minutes, to give them a “cold bath”; this will help them to retain their color and texture and not to break apart.

2. Mix all other ingredients in a large bowl. Make sure all is blended well. Filling is ready.

3. Fill eggplants, pressing gently for the filling to settle in. Make sure to leave about 1cm (0.4”) space at top for the rice to cook and expand. Place them up right, side by side, packed tightly in a stock pot.

4. Pour in about 2 cups of water, add 2 tbsp of olive oil, 2 tbsp of lemon and salt. Bring the liquid to the boil then reduce heat, cover and cook gently for 30 – 35 minutes or until the filling is cooked. Keep the remaining liquid to prepare the tahini sauce.

5. Pour the remaining liquid in a bowl and add the tahini to make dressing to be served with the stuffed eggplants.

 6. Could be served warm but preferably cold.



- Add 2 tbsp of pomegranate molasses for a richer sweet and sour flavor (optional).
- Add 1/2 tsp of ground coffee for a bolder taste (optional)


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