Stuffed Peppers, Tomatoes & Zucchini (Yemistá)
- 6 Large Ripe Tomatoes
- 4 Large Bell Peppers
- 4 Zucchini
- 4 Potatoes, quartered
- Veggie or Chicken Broth (small)
- Large Onion, chopped
- Large Can Crushed Tomato, for bottom of baking dish under veggies
- 1 1/2 Cups Carolina Long-Grain Rice, uncooked (subs. ok)
- Handful Parsley, finely chopped
- Handful Mint, finely chopped
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Sugar, Salt & Pepper
- OPTIONAL: garlic, pignolia nuts, feta or other greek cheeses, cooked ground beef, raisins. lemon
emistá means "STUFFED." This is a popular Greek meal — Dinner, Lunch, or Snack. It can be created to be either vegetarian and vegan ~ or ‘stuffed’ with traditional sauteed onion/ground beef filling option.
This is the perfect summer dish that can be enjoyed hot, room temperature or cold, and even better the next day after the flavors wed, so we recommend making a big batch. Perhaps serve each one with a potato wedge and small triangle of feta drizzled with olive oil and side salad.
Choose to make all stuffed tomatoes and stuffed green peppers; or add stuffed zucchini; or all three.
- With a sharp knife carefully cut the bottoms off the tomato (& save this piece to put back (cover) later after stuffing)
- Scoop out inside center of the zucchini to form a canoe —fashioning a lid to save and re-top the stuffed ingredients after stuffing zucchini.
- Cut off the top of the bell pepper (again, saving the top to use as a cover later). Scoop out and dispose of seed center.
- Place scooped centers of tomato/zucchini in a bowl, to chop and use for stuffing.
- Add 1 teaspoon of sugar to cut the acid, season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Reserve 1/4 of this mixture for later (if it looks like you might have extra), to cover potatoes in baking dish.
- In a deep pan or pot, sauté the onion (optionally with garlic) in olive oil till translucent.
- Add scooped veggies for a few minutes.
- Remove from heat and stir in chopped mint and parsley.
- Add rice; mix well.
- Preheat oven to 375°
- Carefully S T U F F tomatoes, peppers and zucchini. Set aside any extra stuffing for Step 16.
- Ladle some crushed tomato sauce in baking dish under each veggie, and carefully place stuffed veggie on top. Separate with potato quarters.
- Replace all veggie "lids"
- OPTIONAL: You can add a wee bit of broth, or water, to the bottom of the pan so nothing sticks.
- Add any reserved tomato/zucchini mixture to top potatoes wedges. If none is left, no worries— just use some crushed tomato sauce to cover the potatoes.
- Drizzle olive oil over all the vegetables.
- Sprinkle potatoes, peppers and squash with breadcrumbs
- Bake till potatoes are done (maybe 75 minutes, keep checking them with a fork)
There are variations on how to cook the Stuffed Tomatoes/Stuffed Peppers & Zucchini, ranging from 375° to 400°, and from ~1 hour to an hour and 45 minutes. 👍🏼 Here’s where you must put your personal stamp on your recipe. It is here where you must get into it, be artistic and LOVE it!
It’s very easy once you get the hang of it. (Just make sure those potato wedges get done, if you’re using them.). Believe us, it’ll be delicious and you will be hooked!
- Add sautéed onion and ground beef for traditional meat filling
- Add pignolia (pine) nuts and/or raisins to mixture
- Add cubed Greek cheese or parmesan to mixture.
- Bake and serve potatoes with lemon squeezed over