Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Stuffed Peppers from the Freezer

Another keeper! This was excellent and again came from The Best of America's Test Kitchen Special Edition magazine.

I have made stuffed peppers before and they have always been good, yet a little soggy after being drenched in tomato sauce. This recipe is not only easy but the pepper are roasted in the oven, rather than baked which I think makes the texture is much better.

Here are the peppers still frozen, ready for the oven.

Here they are after baking.....delicious! I can't wait to make them again!

Stuffed Peppers From the Freezer

Serves 4 to 6

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, minced (about 1 cup)

8 ounces 85% lean ground beef or ground turkey

4 ounces hot or sweet Italian sausage, casings removed

salt & pepper

4 garlic cloves, minced

2 cups cooked rice

1 (14.5- ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained

4 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded

1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated

3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

4 red or green bell peppers, cut in half through the stem end (stem left intact), cored & seeded

For Serving

2 tablespoons olive oil

salt & pepper

4 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded

For the peppers and stuffing: Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Cook the onion until softened and beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high and add the beef, sausage, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; cook, breaking the meat into small pieces with a wooden spoon, until the meat begins to brown, 6-8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Drain the mixture in a colander for 1 minute.

Transfer the meat mixture to a bowl and mix with the rice, tomatoes, mozzarella, Parmesan, parsley, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Refrigerate until chilled, at least 20 minutes.

Spoon the filling evenly into the bell peppers. Wrap each pepper in 2 layers of plastic wrap and 1 layer of foil. Place in a baking dish and freeze until firm. Transfer to a zipper-lock plastic bag and freeze up to 2 months.

When ready to serve: Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 450 degrees. Cut 8 pieces of foil large enough to just cover the stuffing and the peppers and spray with cooking spray. Unwrap the peppers and cover the filling sides with the new foil squares. Using a skewer, poke several holes through the foil. Place the peppers, foil side down, over the vents of a slotted broiler pan top set over a broiler pan bottom.

Brush the peppers with the olive oil and season with salt & pepper to taste. Bake until the peppers are spotty brown, 30-35 minutes. Flip the peppers filling side up, remove the foil, and sprinkle with mozzarella. Bake until the cheese is melted, about 5 minutes. Let rest of 5 minutes before serving.

1 comment:

birdy's originals said...

I am so glad you posted this recipe! I had some peppers already in the freezer and lost the recipe card. This is a great "make-ahead" dinner!