I picked up a couple of red peppers at the store the other day while doing the shopping, and when we were putting things away, Victor said he thought they would make great stuffed peppers.
I smiled and said go for it! No matter how much I may enjoy cooking, I also enjoy being cooked for – especially by someone who knows how to cook!
Last night, I asked him if he wanted to use beef or pork for the filling – we had both in the freezer. He laughed and said I guess I’m making stuffed peppers, tomorrow. I smiled back and replied what a great idea!
Great minds do think alike!
He chose the pork. It was a good choice! A trick he used was to brush the inside of the peppers with a bit of olive oil and then add in bread crumbs to help absorb some of the juices as they cooked. Measurements are determined by size of peppers and how many you’re making, but a bit of a rule of thumb is equal amounts of meat to all the other filling.
Another thing he added – totally non-traditional – was about a good half-cup of the fruit I made for the lamb dish we had on New Year’s Eve. It added that excellent agrodolce flavor we both love so much. I think it’s something I want to have in the ‘fridge on a regular basis. It has a ridiculously long shelf life – not that we’ll ever keep it that long!
- ground pork
- rice, cooked
- carrots, chopped
- celery, chopped
- shallots, chopped
- green onion, chopped
- garlic, minced
- hot pepper, minced
- salt and pepper
- pecorino, grated
- tomato sauce
- mixed dried fruit
Sauté the vegetables in a bit of olive oil until they soften. Add the pork and continue cooking until it is cooked through and vegetables are tender. Remove from pan into a large bowl.
Add rice and mix well. Add a bit of tomato sauce and stir in pecorino, salt, pepper, parsley, and oregano, to taste. Add a few bread crumbs if filling seems too loose.
Brush the inside of the peppers with a bit of oil and sprinkle liberally with bread crumbs. Fill with pork and tomato stuffing.
Place in an oiled casserole with a bit of tomato sauce on the bottom. Top with more bread crumbs, cover, and bake at 350°F for an hour. Uncover during the last 15 minutes and add shredded cheese, if desired.
They were perfection on a plate! A little bit of heat from the hot pepper, the sweetness from the fruit, the tenderness of the pepper… The pork was lighter than the beef would have been, allowing all of the different flavors to all shine!
It really did come together as a perfect dish.