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  • Cooking recipes
  • Cooking recipes
  • Cooking recipes

Gemista (Stuffed tomatoes and peppers)

Tired of eating tomato salad? Here is an excellent and extremely tasty alternative that includes rice and maybe some minced meat. You can stuff many vegetables like peppers, round courgettes, aubergines or even potatoes.

The traditional recipe for gemista

Section(s): Main Courses, Ladera | Author: Naxos.net


6 firm ripe tomatoes
6 large green peppers
2 onions, finely chopped
1 cup of tomato juice
1 small bunch of parsley, finely chopped
12 soupspoonfuls of rice
1½ cups of olive oil
salt, pepper


Wash the tomatoes and peppers very well. From one end of each tomato cut a slice (from the top end, usually), but be sure not to detach it completely as it must act as a lid. Then with a spoon empty the tomato of all the pulp, ensuring that you do not puncture the skin. From the pulp the seeds must be removed and disposed of. Then do the same of the peppers (operating from the end where the stem was). The seeds from the peppers are also to be disposed of. Then arrange the hollowed tomatoes and peppers in a baking tin. Place the onion and one coup of oil in a frying pan. Before the onions have quite softened, add the rice and fry till transparent.

Chop up the pulp of the tomatoes, add this to the juice and to the rice. Add salt and pepper and the finely chopped parsley, adding to the frying pan half of cup of water. Allow the ingredients to cook till most of the water has been absorbed. Reduce the heat and put each hollowed out tomato and pepper half a teaspoonful of sugar. Then fill (each tomato and pepper) to half way with the rice mixture. Some room must be left for the swelling of the rice. Add one soupspoonful of water and close the lids. Pour the tomato juice in the baking tin with the other half cup of oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake for about 1 hour.

Variation: You can, if wished, add potatoes sliced lengthwise to the baking tin, placed between each tomato and pepper.

Some tips:

The original recipe suggests that you add sugar in the tomatoe sauce. However, it is not necessary if you use ripe tomatoes.

On Naxos, fresh vegetables can be found everywhere. Most of them are home grown and organic. That, combined with a good quality olive oil, gives an extra flavour to this dish.

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