There’s nothing quite like watching a tray of gorgeous fruit (or vegetables) roast in the oven. Ever since I roasted a pan of on-the-vine cherry tomatoes a few months ago for a spaghetti sauce recipe I’m admittedly hooked on roasting – it brings out remarkable flavour you simply don’t get with steaming or sautéing☺. In the spirit of ‘boasting about roasting’ this recipe for Heavenly Stuffed Bell Peppers showcases the tantalizing flavour of roasted sweet bell peppers.
How I’d describe this dish if I didn’t have my photographer extraordinaire husband snapping glamour shots of it:
Juicy, sweet bell peppers stuffed with a blend of soy ground round (sautéed with onions and garlic and seasoned with chili pepper flakes, cumin, paprika and oregano) and fresh salsa (made with fresh cherry tomatoes, onion, red wine vinegar and Himalayan pink salt). The filling is cushioned — both top and bottom — by a layer of shredded mozzarella cheese to elevate the savoury appeal of this dish. Once roasted to perfection, these stuffed peppers are garnished with fresh cilantro and scallions.
Three reasons why you should give this recipe a try:
*The filling and salsa on their own are simply delicious – together they are a winning combination!
*This dish is a great way to use up a bag of extra (or over-ripened) bell peppers and let them take centre stage as a hero ingredient.
*You can assemble this dish in about an hour making it a great weeknight meal.
Inquiring minds want to know:
*Stuffed peppers originated in Spain. In traditional Spanish cuisine a stuffed pepper or ‘pimientos rellenos’ is stuffed with arborio rice and saffron, and then cooked in a tomato sauce. Here in North America the classic Stuffed Pepper consists of a bell pepper stuffed with a mixture of ground beef, tomatoes, rice and cheese.
*All bell peppers come from the same plant — the colour indicates the maturity stage of the fruit. Green peppers, which lack sweetness and often have a subtle bitter taste, are harvested earlier than the other varieties. Yellow, orange and red peppers are matured green peppers with a much fruitier taste. Reds are generally considered the sweetest variety.
*Red peppers are the most nutrient-dense variety of pepper because they’ve been on the vine longest. Red bell peppers have 11 times more beta-carotene, about two times more Vitamin C and ten times more Vitamin A than the first-harvested green bell pepper.
Here are a few of my favourite recipes in which roasted vegetables shine:
Mediterranean-Style Roasted Vegetables (Briam)
Roasted Sweet Potato & Black Bean Cumin-Crusted Quesadillas
Sweet & Savoury Tofu with Cinnamon-Roasted Sweet Potato & Lentil Mash
Indian-Style Tofu Scramble with Roasted Potatoes
Note: This recipe was made using a Thermomix appliance; however, it can easily be adapted using similar food prep tools (e.g. multi-function processor, immersion blender etc).
1/Remove tops (including stem), halve and de-seed 6-8 bell peppers (variety of colours if desired)
2/Place on a parchment paper-lined baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil and bake at 375F for 20 minutes.
Note: The peppers will not have wrinkled skin and/or show black char marks after 20 minutes roasting time…the idea is to tenderize them and elevate their sweetness!
- 1 small cooking onion, halved (55g)
- 2 green onions, coarsely chopped (35g)
- Cilantro, fresh (10g)
- Cherry tomatoes, halved (285g) (I recommend using a smaller variety such as Cherry or Cabernet which have a sweeter profile)
- 2 tsp red wine vinegar (10g)
- Pinch of Himalayan pink salt
- 1 small onion, halved (60g)
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled (10g)
- 4 Tbsp olive oil (60g)
- 1 340g pkg Yves® Veggie Ground (or similar protein substitute)
- 1 Tbsp taco seasoning (10g) (Blend of chili pepper, cumin, paprika, oregano, onion powder and garlic powder)
- 1 tsp garlic powder (5g)
- 1 tsp Himalayan pink salt (5g)
- 6-8 bell peppers, roasted (see Preparation Notes above)
- 1-2 cups shredded vegan cheese (I recommend a blend of mozzarella and cheddar)
- Fresh cilantro (optional)
- Scallions, thinly sliced (optional)
- 1/Add cooking onion, green onion and fresh cilantro leaves to your Thermomix mixing bowl. Chop 5 sec/Speed 7. Using a spatula, scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl.
- 2/Add tomatoes, red wine vinegar and salt to the TM bowl. Chop 5 sec/Speed 7 (Reverse blade). Set aside. Note: Repeat Step 2 if you want a smoother consistency.
- 1/Add onion and garlic to your Thermomix mixing bowl. Chop 5 sec/Speed 7. Using a spatula, scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl.
- 2/Add 2 Tbsp olive oil to the TM bowl. Sauté 3 min/120C/Speed 1. Use a spatula to collect the sautéed mixture at the base of the mixing bowl.
- 3/Add 2 Tbsp olive oil, veggie ground, taco seasoning, garlic powder and salt to the TM bowl. Cook 10 min/85C/Speed 1.
- 4/Add reserved salsa to the TM bowl. Combine well using a mixing spoon. Your filling is now ready!
- 1/Once roasted bell peppers have cooled on the baking tray prepare your “tacos”: toss shredded cheese on the bottom of each pepper, spoon some of the “beef” filling on top, then finish with more shredded cheese.
- 2/Return baking tray to the oven. Bake at 375F for 10-15 minutes or until cheese has melted.
- 3/Garnish with fresh cilantro and scallions.
Yves Veggie GroundTM [Original]