Sunday, May 17, 2009

Stuffed Bell Peppers

I have become all things to all men, so that I may by all means save some.  I do all things for the sake of the gospel, so that I may become a fellow partaker of it.  1 Corinthians 9:22b-23

Derek wants me to say that he was totally against this recipe when I told him I was making it... he thought it sounded gross with no flavor.  He humored me and sampled it and quickly said "WOW!"  In fact, he may have said 10 times during the meal "mmmmmm....this is very very very good."  Of course, I knew all along that he would like it!  :)   

1 (15.25 oz.) can beef broth
1 C. uncooked long-grain white rice
3 Large green bell peppers, stems & seeds removed (to make them like a little bowl)
3 Large red bell peppers, stems & seeds removed
2 lbs. ground beef
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper
2 (10 oz.) cans diced tomatoes with chiles
1 (10 oz.) can tomato soup
3 C. shredded Colby Jack cheese, divided

Preheat oven to 350.  Lightly grease a 13 x 9 x 2 baking dish and set aside.  In a medium saucepan, bring broth to a boil.  Add rice and stir.  Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes (until rice is cooked).

Place peppers in a medium saucepan with enough water to cover.  Bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes.  Remove peppers from water and place in prepared baking dish.

In large saucepan over medium heat, brown the meat with the onions.  Drain fat.  Return meat to heat and add garlic, cooked rice, salt and pepper, stirring to combine.  Add tomatoes, soup and 1.5 C. cheese, stirring thoroughly.  Simmer for about 10 minutes.  Remove from heat.

Divide meat mixture among pepper halves.  Add 1 C. water to baking dish.  Bake for 45 minutes, or until mixture is golden brown.  Sprinkle tops with remaining cheese and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes or until cheese is lightly browned.

Serves 8-10 (if you buy extra bell peppers) 
Taste of the South

This original recipe said it served 6, so I cut it in half when I made it.  I still somehow came out with 6 VERY full bell peppers to serve.  I think you could buy up to 10 bell peppers if you make the whole recipe.  I also made a mistake and when I halved it, I forgot and used the full amount of rice.  We actually really liked the rice:meat ratio so I will continue to double the rice amount.  (also part of the reason mine served more than it said.)  The beef broth I bought was a 14 oz. can so I just added more water to the pot to make it equal to a 15.25 oz. can to cook the rice in.

Can be prepared ahead of time!  I made these earlier in the day omitting the cheese on top and the water in the baking dish.  Then pulled them out to cook and they still only took about 35-40 minutes to cook and were perfect.

One more note, if you are pressed for time, you can skip the boiling of the bell peppers.  I did some boiled and some not to test it.  The boiled ones were a little softer to eat but they really were not significantly different, so next time I'll probably skip that step.  

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