Gemista, pronounced: ye-meesta is another classic Greek dish enjoyed all year round. It is a comforting, hearty dish in the winter and a perfect way to use all of the extra tomatoes, bell peppers and zucchini flowers that are growing in the garden in the summer.
It's one of my favorite dishes to make because you get your veggies, protein and starch all in one meal! Serve it with a nice salad and some bread and you're good to go! Also, it's one of those dishes that taste even better the next day. Try it and see. Here's what you will need:
6 medium tomatoes
5 large bell peppers
4-6 potatoes, peeled and sliced into
1 pound ground beef
1 cup basmati rice
2 medium onions, finely
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups pureed canned tomatoes (any kind: whole, chopped…it
doesn’t matter because you will puree them)
1 cup olive oil
2 cups water
Pinch of crushed red pepper
Salt (about 3 teaspoons)
3-4 tablespoons chopped fresh
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried dill or basil
Cook onions in ¾ cup of olive oil until soft and golden, about
10 minutes. Add garlic and cook until soft, about 5
Add ground beef and break it up while browning a bit. Add canned
tomato puree, ¾ teaspoons salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and
cook approximately 30 minutes.
Add rice, 2 cups of water and a teaspoon of salt and cook for 8
minutes on medium- high heat. Do not
overcook rice because it will continue to cook in the oven!) Remove from
heat and add herbs. Mix well and allow to cool
Preheat oven to 375
Cut and save the tops of the tomatoes and bell peppers. Remove
pulp from inside the tomatoes and reserve. Remove seeds from the bell peppers.
Sprinkle a little bit of sugar inside the tomatoes to cut the
Sprinkle some olive oil, oregano, salt and pepper over the
Arrange the vegetables in a baking dish with the potatoes in
Fill the tomatoes and bell peppers with the beef and rice
filling mo more than ¾ full. The rice will expand more while cooking in the
oven. Place the veggie tops over filling.
Puree the tomato pulp with a little bit of water(about ¼ cup) if
necessary or with some canned tomato puree if you have some leftover. Mix in ¼
cup olive oil and ¼ teaspoon dried
Pour the pureed pulp with seasoning over potatoes. Season the potatoes with salt and pepper. Drizzle a
little more olive oil over the tops of the tomatoes and bell
Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 1 and ½
hours or until the vegetables are nice and soft.
Remove foil covering and raise the temperature to 400 degrees.
Cook about 15-20 minutes more until the veggies get slightly charred on
Allow to cool before serving. These taste even better the next
Hi, I'm Dimitra and welcome to my blog! Here, I'll teach you just how much fun and easy it is to please a crowd with my versions of Greek classics. Kali Orexi as we say in Greek!