This recipe sure will leave you wanting more, just as spring has sprung we slowly start to get excited to different lighter food choices, some of you may already be on the salads and smoothies! This meal is versatile, you can eat it alongside a salad or add some roasted potatoes and bread to bulk it out to a full on hearty dish. The sweetness of the peppers with the tomato soaked rice is to die for. Im super happy with this and very excited to share it with you. My love for Yemista (pronounced Gemista) all started with my visits to Kefalonia, my favourite place in the world! So to recreate this brings a smile to my heart knowing that even if I can't be there in person (yet!) I can enjoy the flavours and feel of the land. This recipe is for 4 large peppers (depending on how you're eating it, one pepper per person usually does it.
x1 large tbsp coconut oil
x1 drizzle olive oil
x1 cup short grain brown rice (or medium grain rice)
x2 red onions - chopped
x5 cloves garlic - chopped
x1 finger chilli (optional!)
x1 lemon (or half a large!)
x2 handfuls spinach (finely shredded)
x6-10 sun ripened/cherry tomatoes (chopped)
x1 tin chopped tomatoes
3 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp rosemary
1/2 mixed spice
2 tbsp nutritional yeast (Engevita Marigold)
Salt & pepper for seasoning.
Preheat the oven to 150 and find a large baking dish for the peppers to sit in!
Add the coconut oil to a large wok or saucepan and warm on a low heat.
Add the chopped onions & garlic and stir though. Keep the heat low throughout.
Add your chilli if you're using it, there are alot of flavours in this and the heat can over power the flavours, so if you are adding a chilli, just give it the tiniest of kicks!
As the flavours infuse and the onions and garlic soften add a few of the cherry tomatoes. Let this simmer for a good 10 minutes.
Add the herbs, oregano, rosemary & mixed spice and stir through.
Stir through the tin of chopped tomatoes and the rice.
Add your salt and pepper, I do 10 twists of cracked black pepper and 8 himalayan salt! (By twists I mean in a grinder!) Let simmer for another 5 minutes.
While all of these ingredients are simmering through wash the peppers and slice the top off to create lids, make the cut quite thick as when they cook they shrivel and we don't want the stem to fall through!
Scoop out the insides and place them in the baking dish.
Stirring through the tomato and rice mixture add the shredded spinach and the juice of the lemon.
Stir through the nutritional yeast at the last moment before scooping!
Scoop the mixture into each pepper leaving a little space at the top for the rice to swell. Add the lids!
With the left over mixture add this to the baking dish and add the left over baby tomatoes! Thinly sliced potatoes would also be incredible in this!
Drizzle olive oil over the peppers, add another few 'grinds' of salt and pepper and we are good to go!
Bake in the oven for 1 1/2 hours checking every 30 minutes to ensure they're not burning. You can cover them lightly with foil, I personally don't.
Once cooked allow to sit in the oven to cool down and settle, this meal is actually twice as good the following day as its sat in all its flavours overnight! YUM!
Set a pepper (or 2!) on your plate and scoop some of the mixture from the dish on the side, enjoy with a salad or some bread and houmous!
I served with a fresh salad of chopped spinach and raw cabbage, cucumber and spring onions. A little drizzle of olive oil and my favourite Japanese sauce Yuzu Ponzu. I added a few sprinkles of sesame seeds and extra nutritional yeast!
+ This meal is fresh, light and filling but without the stuffy feeling after!
+ When baking make sure the dish is deep to hold the extra mixture so it doesn't burn.
+ The peppers are best served at room temperature.
+ If you're not vegetarian you can add mince to the peppers.
+ This recipe can substitute the peppers for big beef tomatoes (amazing!)
+ Remember the chilli is optional!
I really hope you enjoy this recipe, please let me know if you do!
All my love,