(Greek BBQ Lentil and Rice Stuffed Vegetables)
Yemista are Greek stuffed vegetables with meat and rice and rice and baked in the oven. With Greek Orthodox Easter a month away and the great lent upon us, I have given this traditional dish a vegetarian twist. I have substituted the meat for lentils and with the warmer weather upon us, I opted for the oven and cooked this dish on the BBQ. I prefer BBQing vegetables as I love the charr it gives them. These pair perfectly with my Cypriot Spring and Summer Cabbage Slaw for a delicious family meal. For another vegetarian twist on this classic, head to BBQ Spinach and Rice Stuffed Vegetables!
4 cup green lentils, cooked
1 cup Italian style rice, uncooked
½ bunch flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
2 tbsp dried mint
3 cup can diced tomatoes with juice
Juice of 2 lemons
1 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh ground pepper
1 medium red pepper
2 medium green peppers
1 large zucchini
I large firm tomato
1 large sweet onion, carefully pulled apart in 4 layers , reserving the leftover onion
3 cup vegetable stock
¼ cup, extra virgin olive oil + 2 tbsp.
Preheat bbq to medium heat.
Cut tops of peppers and tomato, about 1/4 inch thick and set aside. Clean seeds inside of peppers and tomato. The remaining inside of the tomato, chop finely and set aside. Trim zucchini slightly at each end and cut zucchini into three equal parts. Remove inside seeds and set aside. Peel onions and trim both ends. Carefully peel 4 layers of the onion and reserve the remaining.
To make mixture: chop the reserve onion into small fine dice. In a small size sauce pan, heat 2 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat, sauté the onions for 2-3 minutes until translucent and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, add lentils, rice, cooked onion, parsley, mint, diced tomatoes, reserved tomatoes, ½ of the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Mix well.
Stuff peppers, zucchini, tomato and onions with lentil mixture and place them in a large foil or BBQ safe rectangle pan ensuring they are snug together in the pan. Pour over vegetable stock, remaining lemon juice and top peppers and tomato with their tops. Drizzle with olive oil and cover pan tightly with foil.
Place in BBQ and close cover. Cook for 35--40 mins until vegetables and rice have softened. The cooking time will depend on the heat of your bbq. Remove foil and bbq for another 10 minutes until vegetables have slightly charred. Remove from oven and let stand for 15 mins before serving.
SERVINGS 6-8 | PREP & COOK TIME 1.5 hours