While they could be originating from Minor Asia where meat was not used in the stuffing, these ones are more to what we are enjoying in Cyprus. Two schools of thought, sautéing or not the meat and the onions, I choose sautéing them for a fuller taste. Most popular are the tomatoes but quite enjoyable are aubergines, courgettes and peppers but in any case tomato sauce is abundant!
You could also do stuffed onions, but I leave that for a separate recipe as I like them on their own or with some stuffed tomatoes.
I hope you enjoy it!
- 1kg Pork , double minced
- 300g Rice , Carolina
- Tomatoes , large and ripe
- Aubergines , medium size
- Courgettes , preferably round ones
- Green Peppers
- 2 large Onions , finely chopped
- 500ml Tomato Passata
- 3 tbsp Tomato Paste
- 3 tbsp Tomato Paste
- 500ml water
- 100ml EVOO , Extra Virgin Olive Oil, plus more for drizzle
- 2 tbsp dry Mint , ground
- 1 tbsp All-Spice , ground
- 1 tbsp dry Coriander , ground
- 1 cup fresh Parsley , leaves picked and finely chopped
- 2 tbsp Sugar
- 1 tbsp Garlic paste , or 2 cloves finely minced
- 1 tbsp Sea Salt
- 1 tsp freshly ground Black Pepper
- Cut the top part of the tomatoes and remove their flesh. Keep about 500ml of the flesh to be used in the filling which you have processed in a food processor.
- Cut the top part of the courgettes and remove their flesh. Flesh to be finely chopped and kept aside.
- Cut lengthwise an opening of the aubergines and remove their flesh. Flesh to be finely chopped and kept aside.
- Cut the top part of the peppers and remove their seeds and ribs.
- Take a large high walled frying pan or casserole and place on high heat. Once hot add half of the oil and a minute later add the minced pork. Sauté for couple of minutes until nicely colored and then create an opening in the center and add the onions aiming to sweat them for about 3’. Mix well and then add the rice, the flesh of the tomatoes, courgettes and aubergines, 3 tbsp of the tomato paste, the tomato passata, 1 tbsp of the sugar, mint, all-spice, coriander, the salt and pepper. Mix well, and simmer for 10’ covered for almost all the juices to be absorbed. Right after removing from the heat toss in the parsley and mix well. Allow for about 15’ to cool a bit, while covered.
- In the meantime, we make the sauce to pour over the veggies, by place in the food processor with the metal blade attached, the remaining 3 tbsp of tomato paste, the 600ml of water, the rest of the oil (50ml), the rest of the sugar (1 tbsp), the garlic paste a pinch of salt. Process for few seconds and keep aside.
- Back to the veggies, remove their cut part, add them in a large deep oven proof dish, drizzle some olive oil and lightly sprinkle with salt. Then take a large spoon and fill them with the cooked minced pork, almost to the top as the rice will increase in volume. Cover them with their cut part and pour all-over them the sauce.
- Cover the dish with silver foil and place in a pre-heated oven at 160°C, air circulation and rack set in the middle. Cook for 45’, then increase the temperature to 200°C uncover the dish, cook for about 20’ and until the veggies are nicely charred.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool a bit and the flavours to come together, about 15’. Serve with yoghurt and a crispy green salad. Whatever is left, if any, refrigerate for the next few days (I can admit that I like them most the day after).