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Blog Posted in avatar   Gar Swaffar's Blog

Fast & Easy stuffed bellpeppers - microwaved!

By Gar Swaffar
Posted Jul 28, 2012 in Food
Very few of us like to spend a lot of time in the kitchen in the summer, and even fewer want to spend time in the kitchen in the summer, with an oven baking away.
Stuffed microwave bell peppers
Stuffed microwave bell peppers
Stuffed bell peppers are a family favorite here though, and an easy way to get them is in the microwave. With a bit of precooked brown rice or quinoa laying around, supper can literally be about fifteen to twenty minutes away.
Using a brown basmati rice adds a roasted nuttty flavor to the mix, using a quinoa or a mix of the two adds essential amino acids to make an especially healthy meal also. Trader Joe's has a really nice blend of rices with long and short grain brown rice plus a radicchio that adds a really pleasant flavor and crunch to the rice mix. (That's what I used tonight)
The ingredients are simple:
Bell peppers - choose a number
precooked rice - enough to fill the peppers half full
summer squash - finely chopped
white or red onion - finely chopped
tomato sauce - enough to stick the rice/veggie mix together (plus a bit for the tops)
feta cheese - just a sprinkle for each pepper
Olive oil - flavored olive oils work best
A dash of white pepper for the mix
The process is easy:
Bell peppers with the thin slice cut off.
Place the peppers in a microwave safe bowl.
Add about a half inch of water in each pepper.
Microwave on high for 3 1/2 minutes.
Mix the rice, the chopped squash, onion, and tomato sauce and white pepper.
Remove any remaining water from the peppers, (carefully, it's probably really hot)
Replace in the microwave safe bowl.
Stuff each of the peppers close to the top.
Pour on about a teaspoon of tomato sauce on top
Top with a sprinkle of feta cheese.
Place the peppers in the bowl, back in the microwave and cook on high for 5 1/2 to 7 minutes, until the peppers are well cooked.
Tonight I used small bell peppers fresh from my garden, making "One Biters" which could also be used as hors d'oeuvres for gatherings.
Then, drizzle the flavored olive oil over the peppers. Marisolio Tuscan Herb, or Marisolio Basil Extra Virgin olive oil both work extremely well on the stuffed peppers.
And that is all it takes, it may take a half hour the first time to get all of the ingredients together, but after that, supper can be an easy 15 minute chore with a real treat for those who enjoy stuffed peppers.
Add a fresh garden salad and a glass of red wine (Merlot goes well with the peppers) and summer suppers on the deck or patio can be better than a movie and restaurant.
Stuffed bell pepper
Stuffed bell pepper
It would be interesting to find out if any other flavored olive oil tasting bar/specialty shops are around... seen any?