Posted by: 4whateveritsworth | July 7, 2012

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers


 

Quinoa has become my go-to grain.  It’s so versatile. I’ve been known to eat it for breakfast and dinner many days in a row.  It’s so satisfying, and, of course, nutritious! Just Google it to read more about the benefits.

I decided to create a recipe using whatever I had in the fridge.  There’s more than one way to make this recipe, so be creative and add your personal favorites.

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

1 cup of quinoa

2 cups broth (chicken or vegetable) or water

6 peppers (I bought a 6 pack at Costco – – 2 red, 2 yellow, 2 orange)

Grapeseed oil (or any other oil you prefer) (Since we like our food spicy, I also added a drizzle of hot chili oil in addition to the Grapeseed oil)

onion, one whole, chopped (red or yellow, even Vidalia, which are available this time of year)

mushrooms, 8 oz, sliced or chopped

jalapeno pepper, 1 or 2, seeded and chopped (careful not to touch your eyes after you’ve touched the seeds) This can be omitted if you aren’t partial to spicy foods.

carrots, 2, chopped

celery, 2 stalks, chopped

zucchini, 1 medium, chopped

scallions, 4, chopped

garlic, chopped (we LOVE garlic, so I added about 6 cloves)

corn, frozen, fresh or canned, about a cup

tomatoes, a can of diced

salt (optional)

pepper

Boil 2 cups of water or broth. Add one cup of quinoa and follow the directions on the box/bag. Cook for 20 to 30 minutes.  Set aside.

Wash the peppers and remove the seeds and stems.  I cut them in half  lengthwise.  Using a large pot, fill it with enough water to cover the peppers.  Bring the water to a boil and reduce the heat to low. Add the peppers and submerge them for about 5 minutes until the peppers have softened.  While still firm, but softer, remove the peppers and shake off excess water.

Using a large skillet, drizzle a small amount of oil to coat the pan. I use  Grapeseed oil which can be heated to a higher temperature for browning the veggies.

Clean and cut all the veggies listed above, and any others you may enjoy.  Gradually add each veggie to the pan, beginning with the onions.  Once the onion softens, add, the mushrooms, followed by the jalapeno pepper, carrots and celery. Continue sauteing the veggies until soft. Next add the zucchini, scallions and garlic, until they begin to soften.  Add the corn and tomatoes until warm.

Add the quinoa, blending the ingredients until well mixed and warmed. Add salt and pepper, as desired.  At this point, you may add any other seasonings or fresh herbs that appeal to your taste-buds.

Now the fun part.  I lined a pan with parchment paper.  Fill each half pepper with the quinoa and veggie mixture.  It was pure luck, but I had the right amount of mixture to fill all 12 pepper halves, mounding the mixture in each.

Bake at 350 degrees until the peppers are soft, and the quinoa mixture is browned and crunchy. This can take 30 minutes to an hour, depending upon your preferences.

Needless to say, this recipe can feed quite a few people.  I found one half was plenty for me, with a side salad. My husband enjoyed 2 halves.  I shared some of the peppers with my parents, and froze some for later use.

Unlike my usual recipes, this one was time-consuming.  The filling is delicious by itself, so when my time is limited, I will skip using the peppers to save a step and some time.

Give it a try. Be creative and let me know what you think.

Right now I am soaking black chick peas. Have you ever used them? I came across a bag of them, and having never heard of them, I decided to give them a try.  Supposedly the shell is a bit tougher. I’m planning to make a batch of hummus. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

Until my next post, 4 whatever it’s worth…..

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