STUFFED GREEN PEPPERS
Tonight I wanted to try something a little different. This stuffed peppers dish was something that I had made at school, but I wanted to have my family try it as well. Even though you would be serving just one stuffed pepper and it may appear to be meager, it is pretty deceptive: that single pepper will really fill you up a ton. I was certainly stuffed by the end of the meal. This recipe makes 4 stuffed peppers.
~ 4 green bell peppers
~ 1 lb. ground beef
~ 1/3 cup chopped onions
~ 3 cloves garlic
~ 1 can diced tomatoes
~ 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
~ 1/2 cup uncooked rice
~ 1/2 cup water
~ 1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
~ 1 can tomato soup
~ 2 tsp basil
~ 2 tsp oregano
Take a large pot, fill it with some water and salt, and bring that up to a boil. While the water warms up, take all four of the green peppers, wash them down a bit, and then cut all the tops off of them, ensuring that the seeds are also removed. Boil the four peppers in the water for about four minutes, after which take them out (I’d recommend a strainer or something) and sprinkle a bit of salt into each one. The purpose of this is to soften up the pepper so that later when you eat it, it’s not a hard crunch that you have when you bite down into it. Put those aside for now and we’ll move on to make the stuffing.
Take a large skillet and start to saute the beef, onions, and garlic together on medium-high heat. You just want to brown the meat, so it’s okay if you still see some pink here and there. Drain off the excess fat released from the meat, and then add in the diced tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, rice, water, basil and oregano. Cover this, bring it up to a high heat briefly before turning it back down to medium-low to simmer for 15 minutes. It’s during this time that the rice will absorb all of the liquid from the mixture and capture the flavor while it’s cooking. Once that’s done, turn off the stove and add in 1 cup of the Cheddar cheese, mixing together well. It’s now that you’re ready to stuff the peppers.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. When stuffing the pepper, I took a layered approach and stuffed it in this order, starting from the bottom: cheese, beef, sauce (tomato soup), beef, cheese, sauce. Repeat this for each of the peppers, and then put them into a baking dish. You can take the rest of the tomato soup and pour it all over the peppers in the dish. Top each pepper off with a sprinkle of Cheddar cheese before covering the dish with some aluminum foil and putting it into the oven for 25 minutes.
Serve the pepper by itself, or on the side with a slice of bread to mop up the soup overflow like I did, and it’ll certainly be quite a complete meal. Everyone in my family thoroughly enjoyed the peppers!