Mexican Inspired Stuffed Bell Peppers
I saw these beautiful bell peppers and they were begging me to buy them and stuff them so I did. Yellow, orange and red peppers have a much more mild flavor than the green bell peppers, their flesh is more plump and soft too. Mexican flavors were my inspiration for these peppers and the taste testers gave them a thumbs up. Well, not all the testers gave me the thumbs up my 9 years old is not a fan of peppers or anything that looks different but he did eat the filling and I convinced him to eat some of the pepper. I was able to make these a day ahead and just pop them into the oven when we were ready to eat. The flavors are mild but tasty if you are looking for heat you might want to add some jalapeños or hot sauce.
3 to 4 bell peppers cut in half
1/2 lb. ground turkey or hamburger
1 14 oz. can chopped tomatoes undrained
1/2 cup uncooked rice (I used Jasmine)
1 bouillon cube (Knorrs- brand of tomato bouillon with chicken- in the Mexican section of grocery store)
2 tsp. of Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime seasoning (if unavailable use taco seasoning but cut the bouillon in half or it will be too salty)
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 bunch cilantro chopped fine
cheese (I used Monterey jack blend)
Wash and cut bell peppers in half, cut out membranes, seeds and stem. Fill a large stock pot 1/2 full with water add salt to the water and bring to boil. When water is boiling add peppers to water and boil for 10 min. Drain peppers and shock them in large bowl of cold ice water to stop the cooking.
In a large skillet cook meat and onions until no longer pink, then drain fat. Return skillet to heat and add tomatoes, 1/2 cup of uncooked rice, 2 tsp. Mrs. Dash fiesta blend, bouillon and 1 1/2 cup of water. Bring to boil while stirring, then turn heat to low and simmer with lid on for about 15-to 20 min. until rice is soft, stirring occasionally.
If planning to eat immediately then add cilantro to the meat filling stir and fill the peppers with meat mixture, sprinkle cheese on top put in a casserole dish or jelly roll pan and cover with foil. Bake at 350 for 35 min. take off foil the last 5 min.
If making the peppers ahead wait to add the cilantro until the meat mixture cools down so the herb stays flavorful. When the meat mixture is cool fill peppers and cover with foil and put in the refrigerator for later. When ready to bake take out of refrigerator for 30 min. before baking to warm up to room temperature.
Suggestions for what to serve with the peppers:
green salad with cilantro ranch dressing
black beans, or pinto beans
mushrooms sauted with garlic and butter (mmm..that’s what we had)