After stuffing ourselves for a week in Mexico (with cheese and beans and cheese and beans and nachos and “uno mas cerveza, por favor!”), tonight I am making a lean, mean, fighting-machine dinner. And I must say, I impressed myself! It’s been a crazy few days and I came home from work not wanting to cook ANYTHING. But under Neon’s insistence I came up with a delicious meal using the only leftovers we had in the fridge/freezer (after a week away in Mexico) plus two bell peppers I grabbed from the local veggie store.
This meal has to be dedicated to my lovely Mum…it’s is one of her favourite ways to enjoy a meal with no carbs. So satisfying, and pretty damn good for you!
Stuffed Bell Peppers
Serves: 2 as a main dish, 4 as a starter
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour
Drinking Time: 1 glass of white wine, extra cold (“No mas cervezas por favor!”)
- 1 large red onion, finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 can crushed tomatoes
- Italian seasoning
- Worcestershire sauce
- 1 bay leaf
- good helping of chili powder (however spicy you like it, I used 2 tbps)
- a squeeze of ketchup (for sweetness)
- a good glug (about 1/2 cup) of red wine
- 2 Oxo cubes
- 2 bell peppers, red (of the large variety)
- 1 ball of mozzarella, thinly sliced
- Preheat the oven 425 degrees F.
- In a large saucepan, sautée onions and garlic in olive oil over medium heat until softened.
- Add in ground beef and Oxo cubes, and cook until browned.
- Pour in crushed tomato and stir.
- Add Italian seasoning, bay leaf, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, ketchup and wine for flavor. Stir over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Place lid on the saucepan, turn heat to medium-low and leave to simmer and thicken for at least 20 minutes.
- Prepare the red peppers by slicing the top off, taking the insides out, and slicing in half, long-ways. Place the peppers on a baking tray, and put in the oven for no more than 20 minutes.
- Pull out the peppers and spoon in your sauce. Top with mozzarella and return to the oven for another 20 minutes, until the mozzarella turns golden brown. (If it doesn’t, set it under the grill for a quick minute for color).
I chose to serve my stuffed peppers with a spinach, arugula, and avocado salad, dressed with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard and honey.
Tip from the chef: “If your salad came in a plastic bag, rather than increasing your washing up load, pour your dressing into the bag and shake. Done and done.”