I know that this dish is often made in Italian households. But it was also very traditional meal in my parents house. Funny part is that I hated it, when I was little. For some unknown reason, I couldn’t stand even the aroma of cooked peppers, not to mention the combination with red sauce.
Today I totally love this dish – it pairs well with wine and it was a hit when I made it for my friends.
To stuff the peppers take some patience and effort, but you will be rewarded with really delicious dinner. Baked sweet peppers give this meal a juicy feel, it’s lovely on its own as a dinner or sliced into rings, and served as a warm appetizer.
8-10 Italian sweet peppers
1 pound of mixed ground pork, beef, turkey
1 pack Italian sausage
½ red onion
3 cloves of garlic
½ cup of rice
1.5 cup of chicken broth
1/4 cup of olive oil
1 can of diced tomatoes or 1 cup of Italian baking sauce
Salt and pepper
First, cook ½ cup of rice in chicken broth until soft. Let sit aside and cool.
Cut off top of each pepper so you wouldn’t break the body, throw out the stem and put the rest of the pepper’s tops in food processor. Add red onion and garlic and process pulsing, until finely chopped.
Mix the veggies with all the meat together, season with salt and pepper. Add 1 whole egg and at the end cooled rice. Work the mixture with your hands to combine all the ingredients together.
Holding the pepper, stuff each pepper with your hands, push down carefully, so it fills the whole pepper through but it doesn’t break.
Place stuffed peppers in dry oven pan, sprinkle with salt, olive oil and pour over the whole can of diced tomatoes (including the liquid). If you use baking sauce, pour a little over the peppers and the rest on the bottom of the pan. You can use any Italian red sauce you like.
Cover with aluminum foil and place in oven. Bake for 30 minutes and take off the foil. Bake additional 30 minutes or until peppers are slightly browned and meat cooked through.
Serve in tomato sauce and pasta. You can also slice each pepper into a thick rings, arrange on plate and serve as an appetizer. It’s delicious!
Wine pairing suggestion:
I have picked a Sicilian Ajello Majus Nero D’Avola wine to pair with this dish. The rich flavors of ripe fruit that you get from this wine, were a great compliment to juicy Italian sausage and all the flavors of this dish. This wine is unbelievably good for the price. Loved it!