Original post appeared back in October of 2007, within my first year of blogging. The photos back then weren’t as kind to the delicious dishes I’ve always served up for you, my readers. Tonight I finished off the last of the most recent batch of Stuffed Peppers.
This recipe comes from my mom, who was taught by my grandmother and my mom’s aunts…all excellent cooks. I am fortunate to be be born into a family of amazing cooks.
If there’s a dish I’ve enjoyed time and time again in my life, it’s mom’s Piperies Gemistes or….stuffed peppers.
For as long as I can remember putting food in my mouth, I’ve been eating stuffed peppers. This dish is another Greek standard and it can be made summer or winter. I don’t think I’ve met a Greek who doesn’t eat them, who doesn’t like them . In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever heard any complaints from my non-Greek friends.
This recipe is also versatile. You can use different coloured peppers, use tomatoes or any other vegetable you can think of stuffing. Today I’m using sweet red peppers bell peppers.
This is an easy dish. I was intimidated for years but when you think about it, all you do is hollow out your peppers, cook off your onions & herbs, add meat and rice, stuff then bake….Ta-DAAAAA!
My Piperies Gemistes use red peppers and 3 herbs but I’ll highlight mint for today. Mint is a perennial, has many varieties, thrives in the shade (but can also grow in the sun) and they even survive cold Canadian winters. If left unchecked, they can over-run your garden so keep an eye on your mint. When it comes to cooking and mint, again exercise caution as a little mint goes a long way in your dish.
Red peppers. What can be said about red peppers? They are super-tasty, they have more vitamin C than an orange, contain vitamin A and folic acid. Also, did I mention they are delicious?
Piperies Gemistes (Stuffed Peppers)
2 lbs. lean ground beef
12-14 red peppers, washed, tops cut and inside cored
2 medium onions, diced
1/3 cup olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 cup of fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 cup of fresh dill, finely chopped
2 Tbsp. fresh mint, finely chopped
1 cup of good tomato sauce (pomodoro)
1 cup arborio rice
salt and pepper to taste
1. Wash then cut the tops off your peppers. Hollow out the peppers to rid them of any ribs or seeds. Reserve
2. Place a large skillet on your stove and heat under medium high heat. Pour in your olive oil then add the onions and garlic and lower to medium heat and simmer for 10 minutes to soften the onions.
3. Add your parsley, dill, mint and and tomato sauce and simmer until most of the liquid is gone and you have a thick mixture. Take off the heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
4. Add your rice and ground beef to the onion/herb mixture and and mix all the ingredients using a wooden spoon. Add 2 tsp. of salt and 1/2 tsp. black pepper and mix well. To taste for seasoning, take a spoonful of the mixture and fry it or cook it in the microwave to taste for seasoning. Afterwards, adjust the seasoning in the mixture to your liking.
5. Using a spoon, stuff your peppers and line the bottom of a roasting pot (pick a vessel that will snugly contain your peppers). Pour about 2 cups hot water (enough water to cover 1 inch of the peppers) in the baking vessel and place them in a preheated 375F oven for 75-90 minutes or until tops of peppers are golden brown, the rice is tender.. Serve with some good bread, a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil and a side of Feta cheese.
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Â© 2007-2009 Peter Minakis
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