Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Stuffed Bell Peppers

Summer brings with it a bounty of ripe tomatoes, deep red strawberries, sweet cherries, cool watermelon and ...endless little treats. This is when the weather outside is so hot that you crave something satisfying, simple and soothing. This is a time to take advantage of fresh fruits and vegetables that the season has to offer. To have a meal that is motivated by what you have in your pantry, driven by the ingredients and not the recipe. Fresh, green, crisp bell peppers! There are probably a million things that you can do with it:

Roasted Bell Peppers - Sweet and Smoky, cut into strips tossed with a salad or pasta.
Grilled Bell Peppers - With onions, rolled into a fajita.
Chopped Peppers - In an omlette or maybe a simple curry with Paneer ?
Stuffed Peppers ??

I've had Stuffed Tomatoes before, and they are delicious and simple to make - scoop out the flesh and the seeds and get going with the filling. Bell Peppers are little more simple, just need to first chop the head out and then take a spoon or an ice cream scoop to remove the seeds and stems.

Heat water in a big pot till bubbling and blanch the bell peppers in it for maybe 5-9 minutes so that peppers are half done.

With the filling, I just followed my instinct and added ingredients that I thought would go well with the peppers. I'd recommend following a free flow and add things that you think may pair well with the peppers. I decided to go with a simple rice filling, but you could do potatoes, cheese, olives ..

Method :
Heat olive oil in a pan and add chopped garlic and onions. When onions are translucent add chopped tomatoes and stir with the gravy becomes thicker, add oregano and fresh chopped basil. Season with salt and pepper. Then add to it, the cooked rice - depending on the number of peppers.

Spoon this mixture into the blanched peppers and top with with some parmesan cheese. Arrange the peppers in a baking dish, I poured some tomato sauce into the baking dish maybe 1/4 of the way, and bake in a 350 F oven for 30-35 mins - depending on the size of your peppers, till the skin of the pepper changes color . Since the filling is already cooked, bake till you think the pepper is ready.

Serve hot with the sauce that it was cooked in. Simple. Next time I'll definetely tweak the non-recipe some more, but this time, I think it was fun to be a little creative and didn't taste too bad either !!


Anonymous TRUPTI said...

My hubby ADORES stuffed peppers...this is a must try for me next time when I make a Mexican meal. thanks!


1:57 PM, September 27, 2006  

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