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Menu Plan for Fall I: Week 1, Tuesday

Stuffed Bell Peppers, Oriental Style

Cooking time: 45 minutes for menu      Cooking schedule: see below for instructions

     Use any color pepper you like; I usually use red and yellow. These are cooked in the skillet rather than baked.

Stuffed Bell Peppers, Oriental Style

Total time: 45 minutes
   Stuffed Bell Peppers don't always have to have tomato sauce and cheese on them.  Choose whatever color pepper you like.  You could substitute Basmati or regular rice for the brown. Try to get 4-sided peppers, they are easier to stuff and lie flat.

Stuffed Bell Peppers, Oriental Style Ingredients: 

  • 5oz (150gr) ground beef/turkey/sausage
  • 2 bell peppers
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 rib celery   optional
  • 1 tbs chopped fresh ginger     substitute 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1/3 - 1/2 cup chopped water chestnuts
  • 2 tbs soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 (12oz, 360ml) cups chicken stock
  • 2 tbs cornstarch (corn flour, maizena)
  • Brown rice:
  • 1/3 cup (2.2oz, 65gr) quick cooking brown rice
  • 2/3 cup (5oz, 150ml) beef stock -or stock and water mixed, check your package for correct quantity

 Instructions:

  • Cook rice in stock according to package directions, until done. 
  • Cut peppers in half the long way (try to find the best flat sides before cutting so that they will lay nicely) and remove stem end and seeds.  Set aside (do not blanch).
  • Peel and chop onion and garlic. 
  • Chop celery. 
  • Sauté onion, celery and garlic over medium heat in large skillet.  Skillet must be large enough to hold all pepper halves, when they are stuffed, in one layer. 
  • When onions start to become translucent add ginger, water chestnuts and meat. 
  • Break meat up as it cooks. 
  • When meat is cooked add 1 tbs soy sauce and 1/4 cup chicken stock to skillet.
  • Dissolve 1 tbs cornstarch in 1/4 cup chicken stock.  
  • Add to the skillet and stir well, cooking until it thickens. 
  • Add rice when rice is done, mix well. 
  • Fill peppers with meat and rice (set on a plate while you work). 
  • Once all peppers are filled using all of the beef and rice, put the peppers back into the same pan (filled side up, in one layer). 
  • Pour remaining 1 cup of chicken stock around peppers in skillet, cover, return to heat and simmer for 20 minutes, until peppers are tender. 
  • Remove peppers. 
  • Dissolve remaining 1 tbs cornstarch in remaining 1 tbs soy sauce (add 1 tbs water to make it easier). 
  • Bring stock left in pan to a boil. 
  • Add cornstarch mixture and stir, cooking until thick.  You have a sauce! 
  • Serve peppers with sauce on the side.

Note: If you have any of the beef and rice left after filling peppers (as always, depends on size of peppers) just remove from skillet, keep it warm and serve on the side also.

Note2: Use quick cooking rice - it will cook in the time it takes to sauté the meat. The rice I use takes about 15 minutes.

Cooking schedule: 45 minutes
Assemble all food, utensils and serving dishes
Utensils: measuring cups, spoons, knives,
large skillet with lid, small saucepan with lid, plate

Start to cook rice
Chop onion, mince garlic
Sauté onion, garlic
Cut peppers, choosing best sides, clean
Chop water chestnuts
Peel, mince ginger
Add water chestnuts, ginger to skillet
Add meat to skillet, breaking it up and browning

Add soy sauce, stock to skillet when meat is brown
Dissolve cornstarch in stock, stir into skillet until thick
Add rice to meat, stir well to combine
Stuff peppers, putting on plate while you work
Remove any leftover stuffing, cover to keep warm
Put peppers back into skillet, add stock, cover, simmer
       20 minute break
Dissolve remaining cornstarch in remaining soy sauce
Remove peppers
Bring stock in skillet to boil
Stir cornstarch into stock in skillet to make sauce
Serve peppers, sauce on the side