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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Veggie Stuffed Peppers

This was one of those dinners where I literally threw whatever I could find in the fridge into this dish in the hopes that it would all taste okay together. In this case, it did! I'd never made stuffed peppers before, but green peppers were on sale 4/$0.75, and I needed to use some of mine up before they went bad.

Typically stuffed peppers have ground beef or turkey in them, but I didn't have either on hand. I did have a few cans of beans that I could've used in the filling, but I was saving those for other recipes. So, instead I went with a veggie-based filling, and figured we'd get our protein from eating copious amounts of candy corn + peanuts later that night (the protein coming from the peanuts and not the candy corn, obviously).

For this "everything but the refrigerator" version of stuffed peppers, I did the following:

-3 green peppers
-2 cups of spinach
-2 celery stalks
-2 full-sized carrots
-2 roma tomatoes
-1 microwavable pouch of brown rice
-1 small can tomato sauce
-1 cup ricotta cheese
-garlic powder & dried parsley, to taste

1. Preheat oven to 375. Cut the tops off of the green peppers and clean out the seeds and membrane. Set aside.
2. In a food processor, chop the spinach, celery, carrots, and tomatoes (could also chop by hand, it'll just take longer).
3. Microwave the brown rice and pour into a bowl.
4. Add the veggie mixture to the rice and stir to combine.
5. Add the ricotta and the tomato sauce and mix well. Sprinkle liberally with garlic powder and parsley and stir again.
6. Spoon the filling into each of the peppers. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes or until peppers are soft (ours were still a little crunchy after 30 minutes, but Ryan was headed out the door so we ate as is and they were fine)

For being a complete dinner on a whim, these turned out really well. They smelled great while cooking and were very flavorful. I was a little disappointed that the ricotta cheese couldn't really be tasted, but it did make the filling nice and creamy.

**Note: there was a lot of extra filling! we easily could have stuffed 2 more peppers.