Saturday, December 22, 2007

Roasted Red Peppers Stuffed with Kale & Rice

I thought it would be nice to have some stuffed peppers this weekend, so I pulled out this recipe from the CLBB. It has a lot of small steps but it doesn't take very long. It took maybe 45 minutes from start to finish. It's pretty simple, too.

The end result was delicious and I liked it better than some of the other non-spicy stuffed peppers we've made (the various stuffed poblano pepper recipes are in a league of their own). Don't skimp on the pine nuts because it is what really makes the dish. Don't skimp on the kale either - 6 cups of kale turns into more like 3/4 cup when it's cooked. We made ours with kale but a recipe note suggests you could also use mustard greens, spinach, chard, or collard greens. I liked the kale though. We would make this again.

stuffed peppers

Roasted Red Peppers Stuffed with Kale & Rice

3 medium red bell peppers
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper -- to taste
1/2 lb kale -- trimmed and washed (6 cups lightly packed)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion -- chopped
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
2 cloves garlic -- minced
3/4 cup cooked brown rice
1/2 cup parmesan cheese -- freshly grated
1/4 cup pine nuts -- toasted, divided
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt -- or to taste
freshly ground pepper to taste

To prepare peppers: Preheat oven to 400. Halve peppers lengthwise through the stems, leaving them attached. Remove the seeds. Lightly brush the peppers outside and inside with oil; sprinkle the insides with salt and pepper. Place, cut-side down, in a 9x13 inch baking dish. Bake until peppers are just tender, 10-15 minutes. Let cool slightly. Turn cut-side up.

To prepare filling: Bring 2 cups salted water to a boil in a large wide pan. Stir in kale, cover and cook until tender, 10-12 minutes. Drain, rinse under cold water; squeeze dry. Finely chop.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and chopped bell pepper; cook, stirring often, until onion is golden, 6-8 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Stir in the kale. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly. Stir in rice, cheese, 2 tbsp pine nuts, and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Divide the filling among the pepper halves. Sprinkle with remaining pine nuts.

Add 2 tbsp water to the baking dish. Cover the peppers with foil and bake until heated through, 15-20 minutes. Uncover and bake for 5 minutes more. Serve hot.

Yield: 3 servings

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