I often have “food envy” in the caf at school around lunchtime. My classmates are always bringing the most delicious looking leftovers and we often swap recipes. My lovely friend Courtney had these amazing looking stuffed peppers for lunch a few weeks ago, and she sent me the recipe she used. I adapted it a bit and made it dairy free. I thought I’d share with you here, as it made for a delicious and healthy dinner and awesome leftover lunch the next day.
Quinoa is a gluten-free grain-like seed that is very high in protein. It has a really nice nutty flavour, and pairs well with the lean ground turkey. If you’re looking for a vegetarian option, the original recipe suggested substituting the turkey with your favourite bean (I would bet red kidney or chickpeas would go well in this dish) or just using a bit more quinoa.
- 3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
- 4 large round bell peppers
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 medium red onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 package ground turkey (approx. 1.5-2 cups)
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp freshly grated ginger
- a few dashes sea salt –> if you aren’t worried about your blood pressure, add a few more!
- similar amount of freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 larger can of diced tomatoes (no salt added)
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- Cook quinoa according to the directions on the package. We have a rice cooker (which is the best invention ever, thank you to my favourite Korean roommate for introducing me to this miracle many moons ago) so I cooked it in there – 1 part quinoa, 2 parts water.
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Cut off tops of the peppers and remove seeds/pulp, being careful not to puncture the bottom of the pepper. Arrange peppers into a baking dish (I sort of had to squish mine into this ceramic dish so they would stand up, but if yours are good at standing upright, any size glass/tin/ceramic baking dish would work well too).
- In a deep frying pan, heat oil and then sauté onion and garlic together for a few minutes until fragrant.
- Add cumin, ginger, salt, pepper and ground turkey. Cook through.
- Stir in undrained diced tomatoes, the cooked quinoa and chopped parsley.
- Fill peppers with the stuffing.
- Cover dish with aluminum foil, and bake in the oven for approx 40 minutes.
Peppers make a great vessel for serving all sorts of different grains, vegetables and meat. I imagine adding cheese would make these extra-delicious! The original recipe suggested feta, but cheddar or mozzarella would be delicious once melted.