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This week we feature another recipe from Friar, the Big Dawg. If you have any requests for a particular recipe or would like to feature your own personal favourite recipe (but do remember that you should not submit anything which may be copyright), then send an email to Shazz.

A Vegetarian Meal - Stuffed Red Bell Peppers

Growing up, being raised by an Italian mother, the summer meant green peppers. Green peppers on sandwiches, green peppers in sauces, green peppers fried with eggs, but mostly summer meant green peppers stuffed with ground beef, rice and salt. Basically a meatball could fit inside a green pepper, obviously indicating that THAT was the correct way to eat a green pepper.

The discovery of peppers in a different colour was astonishing. Red, yellow, orange... purple? The bell peppers are very similar in taste, but in the summer season, red bell peppers are a little juicier, a little sweeter and can look amazing on a plate. Tasty food will make friends, but food that looks as good as it tastes will make them come back for more!

Do not be dismayed by the length of the recipe's name, the recipe itself is very easy!

Roasted Stuffed Red Bell Peppers

Stuffed with three cheeses, artichoke, spinach and rice.

What you'll need for this recipe

  • 6 medium ripe red bell peppers
  • 6oz - 175g - brie
  • 6oz - 175g - monterrey jack cheese1, into 1 cm cubes
  • 6oz - 175g - Havarti2, into 1 cm cubes
  • 6-8oz - 175g-225g - jar of marinated artichoke hearts3, drained and chopped into 1 cm cubes, or so.
  • 12oz - 325g - can of spinach, drained, rinsed and patted dry4; roughly chop the spinach
  • 2 cups - 500g - steamed rice
  • Garlic powder
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil

What you'll be doing

  1. Make 2 cups of rice5. After the rice is finished, set it aside and let it cool.
  2. Turn your oven to broil6 and give a casserole dish (with enough room to hold all the peppers) a good rub with olive oil.
  3. Cut the tops off the red peppers. Give the tops enough girth to be roasted and put back onto the peppers, but not so much that the holding capacity of the peppers is jeapordized.
  4. Clean out the membranes and seeds from the peppers without opening them further.
  5. In a glass bowl combine the cheeses, rice and cut up veggies. The brie should be soft enough to act as a gel for the ingredients.
  6. Fill the peppers with the mix. Top the peppers with several good turns of pepper and a hearty dose of garlic powder.
  7. Put the peppers in the oven to broil7. Be sure that they do not tip over and place the pepper tops in the pan as well (but not atop the stuffed peppers.
  8. After four minutes drizzle olive oil over the peppers.
  9. Remove the peppers when the tops start to blacken at the edges, the cheese starts to get bubbly and the top of the cheese starts to brown. This will be from 8-12 more minutes.

Menu ideas

The stuffed red peppers look remarkable with the lids on, slightly off center, showing the browned cheese beneath. Below are some ideas to round out the menu.

  • A salad of red and green leaf lettuce with a raspberry vinagrette.
  • A salad of tomato, cucumbers and basil with salt, pepper, oil and red wine vinegar.
  • Grilled chicken with yellow summer squash.
  • Just about any grilled fish.
  • Serve the pepper as an entrĂ©e with a hearty side dish, such as pasta salad, potato salad or antipasto.
  • The richness of the peppers and cheese should encourage a light and healthy dessert: fresh fruit and cream, sorbet or iced juices.

The trick with creating this meal rests with balancing the sweet and rich taste of the red pepper and cheese, with the vibrant red colour of the peppers.

Share and Enjoy

The Recipe Archive

Friar, the Big Dawg

25.07.02 Front Page

Back Issue Page

1May substitute pepper-jack cheese.2Cream Havarti is a deliciously mild, very creamy, semisoft Danish cheese laced with small to mid-sized holes.3There are various sizes of jars for artichoke hearts, but the volume of artichoke to use, is one of personal preference.4OK, OK, canned spinach should be reserved for babies, certainly. However, it cuts the recipe preparation time in half and you want the spinach to have been well soaked prior to use.5You can use a rice cooker or make the rice in a pan, or steal from the neighbours, it does not matter, so long as the rice is a little on the dry side.6Grill for UK readers.7Or under the grill.

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