Friday, March 9, 2012

Easy Stuffed Bell Peppers

I love to cook and I like experimenting with new and in depth recipes. (I'll share some of those later on. I have a lemon meringue pie recipe that's worth killing for.)

But sometimes, some days—when I can't tear myself away from all those interesting things on the internet, or I'm actually making headway on a storyI want a healthy dish I can throw into the crock-pot and forget about.

While this recipe is a little more involved than your average toss-everything-into-the-pot slow cooker recipe, it's still simple and relatively quick. (And it's vegetarian friendly!)

Easy Stuffed Bell Peppers (Crock-Pot)

4-6 bell peppers (Any color)
2 14oz cans black beans (rinsed, drained)
1 cup brown rice (optional)
1 can Rotel Diced Tomatoes and Green Chilies (you can substitute homemade salsa)
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 med white onion, chopped
2-4 chili peppers (optional; I've used serrano and jalapeno before)
2-4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup shredded cheese, plus extra for topping (I use a Mexican style blend)
3 tsp chili powder
2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 cup hot sauce
Olive oil

First things first: drain and rinse the black beans. (I also drain the Rotel, but that's optional. You might prefer a soupier consistency for your stuffing mixture.)

Mince the garlic (or use the pre-minced variety from the jar) and chop the onions and chili peppers.

(Word of warning? Look out for chili pepper burns! Wear gloves. Or make sure you have some yogurt in your fridge for the hand slathering goodness you'll need to take part in later. I forgot about the pepper oils last time I made this and, yes, I did dip my hands in a tub of yogurt. It helped.)

Heat a skillet, spread a little olive oil in the bottom and saute the garlic for about 30 seconds, then add the onions. Once the onions are starting to turn translucent, throw in the chili peppers, black beans and Rotel and mix thoroughly.

And the chili powder and cumin (and the brown rice, if you're using it). Stir and let the mixture simmer on med-low heat for about five minutes. 

Once it's heated through, I transfer the mix to a bowl for easier stirring and add the 1/2 cup of cheese and the hot sauce.


To prepare the bell peppers, simply wash them, decapitate them, cut out the core/seeds, and remove the stems.

Gutted peppers

Fill each pepper to the brim, put its top on and cook in the crockpot on low 4-6 hours. (I do high heat for 2 hours and then drop to low for the remaining 4 to ensure the peppers get nice and soft.)

Aren't they pretty?

Top the peppers with sour cream, Pico de Gallo, extra cheese, a dash of fresh cilantro (or all of the above).

I always go for the extra cheese...

Bon App├ętit.

If you try the recipe, give me a shout and let me know how you liked it.


L. M. Leffew said...

Stopping by from the Not Mommy hop.  So many interesting things to do with a crock pot!  I love how you "decapitate" and "gut" your peppers...they look delicious!

L. M. Leffew said...

 Thanks for stopping by. :)

L. M. Leffew said...

Oh, I like the way you cut the tops off, removed the stem, and recapped!  I do stuffed peppers pretty regularly but it never occurred to me to do that.  It's much nicer looking than my usual decapitation.

L. M. Leffew said...

 Ooh, it looks good AND pretty! :D

L. M. Leffew said...

The first time I made these, I completely spaced out on removing the stems. And then forgot to eat around them. It was like chewing stewed bark. :)

Thanks for stopping by.

L. M. Leffew said...

 Thank you. :) And thanks for stopping by.

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