Foodie In Training

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Orzo stuffed peppers

First, a big thanks to Dan and Jude, two of our newer readers, pictured above. Whats up guys?

I love roasted red peppers. I love their sweetness and their texture and they are a great addition to a variety of dishes from pastas to pizzas to salads. They are great just on a piece of toast. I've never roasted my own peppers, but my grandma has and they are even more wonderful than the ones you can buy in a jar. Hers were served simply with some olive oil and they were roasted with whole cloves of garlic that end up tender and delicious yet surprisingly sweet and mild.
Still, I've never really thought that a roasted pepper could be the star of a meal. But, that changed this week when Erin and I made orzo stuffed peppers. We got the recipe from a Giada episode. Orzo is a rice shaped noodle that is common in soups. Now, fresh bell peppers are not really in season, but we were able to find a few at our grocery store that would do the trick. We hollowed them out and started on the mixture for the "stuffing". It included zucchini, orzo (cooked in chicken stock), mint (the Greek's basil, according to Giada), garlic and parmasean cheese.

After we stuffed the peppers and put them in the oven, we had a lot of left over stuffing. Of course, we tasted it- it was delicious. The mint was a great touch along with the cool simple tomato and pasta mixture. I think cooking the orzo in stock added so much depth and flavor to the dish and of course the garlic just brought everything together. In the hour it took to cook the peppers, we had eaten all the leftover mixture, it made for a great cold pasta appetizer. The last 15 minutes of cooking, the peppers were uncovered and sprinkled with extra cheese that formed a nice crust. We were going to a little piece of meat to our meal, but since we had already had a lot of food and the peppers looked so good, we decided to have in just with a salad.

The peppers were tender, but probably could have used another half hour to really get the roasted flavor. Still, I think we will probably be trying more varieties of roasted and stuffed peppers.


Dan V said...

I love the sweetness of red peppers as well!! :)

Anonymous said...

I love the pictures you have included on your posts! Peppers look yummy. You 2 are doing the cooking next time you come home!
mom :)

Anonymous said...

the next time you come home, i think you need to make the stuffed peppers and invite me over. your mom won't mind. i'll bring the wine.

Anonymous said...

i forgot to say it was me-Patti Conger