Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Stuffed Peppers

 First, I want to thank ALL OF YOU - somehow, not sure how, I exploded over 1,000 hits yesterday!  Thanks, faithfuls!  Write me a comment and let me know what you think of my blog so far!
Tonight's dinner is a personal fave as well - and after making a promise to use these gorgeous and enormous green bell peppers I got from Delicious Orchards over the weekend - I had to make them tonight.  Here ya go!

Stuffed Peppers

  • Four medium sized bell peppers.  Green is best because they are firmest and not as sweet as red, orange or yellow; also, don't use the huge ones I did tonight because you won't have enough filling.  As you'll see in the following pictures.  (or just use slightly more filling)
  • a pound and a half of ground turkey or ground beef.  We used turkey.
  • 1/2 cup rice - can either be the regular normal rice, which is recommended, or boil-in-a-bag Uncle Bens brown rice, which I used because it's a lot easier faster to cook.
  • 4 or 5 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1/2 small onion, diced
  • 16 oz tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsp breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • Italian seasoning, or basil, oregano, garlic powder, etc
  • 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella/provolone cheese
Preheat oven to 375*F.
Cook up your rice so that it's just below "fully done" - like, if you are using a boil-in-a-bag that says to cook the rice for 10 minutes, cook it for 8 instead.  Set aside.

Heat up EVOO in a skillet, and throw in the onion and garlic so they get all fragrant and translucent and beautiful.  Okay, okay, like for 5-6 minutes.

Then throw in your meat and brown it up.  This is to ensure you don't do what I did once, I admit it: if you put the meat in the peppers uncooked, then bake, you run the risk of not cooking the meat through.  And even though you have a meat thermometer, you are in a rush to feed three hungry men.  And then you need to ashamedly take the dishes away from your boyfriend and two of his friends who usually love your cooking but you now fear you have scarred them for life and they will never touch your culinary skills again.  (It was fine, I threw it back in the oven, they didn't mind, but I was embarrassed as hell.)


While your meat is browning, hollow out your peppers.  Cut the tops, and get out the seeds and rind, and throw away.  You may need to also cut the bottoms to make sure they stand up flat.  If you want, also, blanche the peppers: boil up a large pot of water, then plunge the peppers in for no longer than 90 seconds.  Then take them out and plunge them into ice water.  This is good if you don't really want too-crispy peppers.  Otherwise, just keep them raw and let them cook up in the oven.
 


Next, mix up the fully-cooked meat/garlic/onion blend with the cooked rice, breadcrumbs, Worcestershire (fun to say, hard to spell, thank you red squiggly line), ALL BUT 4 TBSP of the tomato sauce, all seasonings, and salt/pepper. An option is to add one egg to the mix, to help congeal everything.  Sometimes I do this, tonight I didn't.  Your call - if the stuffing feels "loose", hit it with an egg.

With my prized Peugeot pepper mill with multicolored peppercorns.  Love this thanggg.
At this point - let me introduce you to my sous-chef, Tequila.  Always present during my meal-cooking.  And always willing to try out whatever I'm making.  I know, bad owner.

So, uh, you have any turkey left over?  No?  Can I have some anyway?
  Stuff your peppers and put them in a baking dish with about a half inch of water so the bottoms don't burn.  Voila, take a look at my gorgeous, but under-filled peppers.  Womp womp. 

That one on the left is just sad.  But, it is a pretty freaking huge pepper.  If I filled it, it would be straight unhealthy.
 Bake in your 375* oven for approx 45 minutes.  Then, take them out, spoon the rest of the tomato sauce on top (1 tbsp per pepp), then hit it with a sprinkle of mozz/prov shredded cheese blend.
Let them broil and get all melty for about 5 minutes.  Take out, and serve hot.


mmm, perfectly browned, little wrinkly on top.  Perfect.
So, what do you think?  Would you try it?  Anything else you would like to see?  Let me know in the comments!

Cheers, C

3 comments:

  1. Wow! this looks utterly amazing!!

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  2. As a recipient of these mouth-watering Stuffed Peppers, I can attest to their deliciousness :P

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  3. Yummy! These look delish, I've always wanted to make these! :)

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