Stuffed Red Peppers with Kale & Rice

I grew up on stuffed bell peppers. One of my grandma’s favorite recipes to make us. She would stuff them with all sorts of things but traditionally with feta, veggies, and ground beef. Over the years I’ve limited my dairy consumption and have said good-bye to my dopamine-inducing cheese addiction. Now with all the vegan cashew cheeses on the rise and the vegan butter, who needs dairy?!

Delight friends and family this summer with this perfect picnic lunch entree or supper. The crimson flesh of red pepper gives bright contrast to kale’s deep green. Chopped onion and minced garlic combine with lemon and herbs to bring an aromatic flavor to the brown rice. Delicious, filling, and vegan friendly, too!

 

WHAT YOU NEED

  • 3 medium red bell peppers
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp Himalayan salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste

FOR THE FILLING

  • 8 ounces kale, (6 cups lightly packed), trimmed
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup cooked short-grain brown rice, (see Tip)
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (optional or use preferred substitute)
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts, divided (see Tip)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste

PREPARATION

PEPPERS: Preheat oven to 400°F. Halve peppers lengthwise through the stems, leaving them attached. Remove the seeds. Lightly brush the peppers outside and inside with oil; sprinkle insides with salt and pepper. Place, cut-side down, in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Bake until just tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool slightly. Turn cut-side up.

FILLING: Bring 2 cups salted water to a boil in a large wide pan. Stir in kale, cover and cook until tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Drain, rinse under cold water; squeeze dry. Finely chop.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and chopped bell pepper; cook, stirring often, until onion is golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Stir in the kale. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly. Stir in rice, Parmesan, 2 tablespoons pine nuts and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Divide the filling among the pepper halves. Sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons pine nuts.

Add 2 tablespoons water to the baking dish. Cover the peppers with foil and bake until heated through, 15 to 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for 5 minutes more. Serve hot.

Time Saving Prep Tip: Follow Steps 1, 2 & 3. Cover and refrigerate up to 2 days.
Brown Rice Prep Tip: Place 1 cup brown rice, 2 1/2 cups water and a pinch of salt, if desired, in a medium saucepan; bring to a simmer. Cover; cook over low heat until rice is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, 45 to 50 minutes. Or use a rice cooker. Makes 3 cups.
For Toasted Pine Nuts: Heat a small dry skillet over medium-low heat. Add pine nuts and cook, stirring constantly, until golden and fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Or spread in a small baking pan and bake at 400°F for about 5 minutes.

 

REFERENCE
2018-07-08T02:49:36+00:00