Gemista (Stuffed tomatoes and peppers)
8 ripe medium tomatoes
8 round big peppers (preferably green)
1 cup of rice (long grain)
5 tablespoons chopped parsley
2 small green peppers (finely chopped)
1 ½ cups of olive oil
1 teaspoon of fresh mint finely chopped
1 ½ tablespoons of salt
1 teaspoon of pepper
A very typical Greek main course. They smell amazing whilst they are baking. First you should start by preparing the ‘cases’ that will hold the stuffing by washing the tomatoes and peppers. Next, cut a thin round slice off the top of the tomatoes and peppers with a sharp knife and put them to one side. Remove the inside part of the tomatoes and the peppers (I recommend using a small spoon for this). Try to leave the empty tomatoes as thin as possible but be careful not to damage or pierce their skin. Save the inside parts of the tomatoes you have removed (except for the seeds – these can be discarded), as they will be used for the stuffing. Mash the insides of the tomatoes in a food processor or blender.
Then, to prepare the stuffing, heat the olive oil in a deep frying pan and sauté the onions and chopped peppers until they look golden brown. Remove the pan from the heat and add all the remaining ingredients. Stir them together with a spoon and fill the tomatoes and peppers with the mixture, having already arranged them in a Pyrex dish or baking pan ready for baking. Replace the previously saved tops of the tomatoes and peppers. Pour 1 cup of tomato juice into the dish or pan and fill the gaps between the stuffed vegetables. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper and bake in a medium oven for approximately 1 ½ hours.
They are delicious hot or cold.
This wonderful Greek recipe serves 5-6 people.
Meet Kavouri-Preka Maria
I was born in Skiathos in 1971. Cooking played a crucial role in the family I grew up in and all I remember as a child was my mum cooking for us every day of the week. So, from a very young age I got involved in the kitchen, watching and helping my mum cooking and experimenting, thus it is in my nature to experiment as well! After high school, I studied at the IEK Dimitra and straight after that I started cooking in our own place, which was called ‘CalmaTaverna’. My love for Greek cooking has enabled me to gain the confidence and trust of people very quickly. Due to the many questions I was being asked, I decided to write a book that includes all of my recipes and it is widely available for sale at many shops in Skiathos. I encourage you to visit our website: www.skiathoscalma.gr.