Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Stuffed Bell Peppers

 Red bell peppers were on sale 3 for $1. I bought tons of them and then decided later what to make. I decided to make stuffed red bell peppers and they were delicious! I used Giada's recipe as a guide, but  definitely did my own thing. They were awesome, definitely worth a try. They can be simplified by using a plain marinara sauce and without adding all the extras to add flavor.

2 Tbsp olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup fresh parsley leaves (about 1 bunch), chopped fine
½ cup fresh spinach leaves, chopped fine
1/3 cup mushrooms, chopped fine
1 tsp garlic salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes
1 lb. ground turkey meat
½ lb. (about 2 links) Italian sausage, cases removed
3 Tbsp ketchup
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1/3 cup Mozzarella, grated
1/3 cup dried plain bread crumbs
Cooking spray
4 red bell peppers, halved and seeded to create 8 bowl-like shapes
2-3 cups tomato basil marinara sauce, divided
Bowtie pasta, cooked and drained

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Heat up the oil in a large sauté pan. Add the onions, garlic, parsley, spinach, mushrooms, and seasonings. Sauté until onions are tender and translucent.
3. Add turkey and Italian sausage to the sauté pan and cook along with the onions and spices. Break up meat with cooking utensil so that all meat is crumbled in the pan with all the rest. Cook until meat is mostly cooked, about 5-10 minutes, stirring frequently.
4. Remove half of the meat/onion mixture and place in a separate large bowl. Add the ketchup, Parmesan, Mozzarella, and bread crumbs to meat/onion mixture. Combine ingredients until evenly spread. Set aside.
5. Grease a 9 by 13 baking dish with cooking spray. Take each of the bell pepper halves and stuff with the meat/onion/cheese/breadcrumb mixture. Be sure to fill them up as best as possible. Place each stuffed half into the baking dish. Top each stuffed bell pepper with a spoonful of marinara sauce. Place in the oven and bake for 30-40 minutes.
6. Pour remaining marinara sauce into the remaining meat/onion mixture in the sauté pan. Stir to combine. Heat on low until stuffed bell peppers are fully cooked.
7. Once bell peppers look done, they are wilted and soft, remove from the oven. Place bowtie pasta on a dish and top with the marinara sauté mixture. Top off with a stuffed bell pepper. Enjoy!   

 Recipe adapted from Giada De Laurentiis

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