Friday, May 16, 2014

Peppers Stuffed with Farro and Italian Sausage

Some dishes are classic. But I still like to tinker, especially as new ingredients come to my attention. Farro is lovely in this dish. Slightly nutty and more earthy than rice, it adds quite a bit more flavor. It also doesn't disintegrate as much as rice typically does. As a result, the filling has much more texture and doesn't form up into a homogeneous meatloaf mass as some other stuffed pepper fillings are wont to do. The blend of Italian sausage and ground beef lends the filling a little extra kick. Feel free to play around with spicier meat blend. A chorizo tex/mex blend could be fun...

the recipe is my own

serves 4

The Ingredients:
1/2 cup farro
1 cup stock or water 4 medium green peppers
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup diced onion
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 - 14.5 oz can petite diced tomatoes
1 - 8 oz can tomato sauce
1 Tbsp capers, minced
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp basil
1/4 tsp thyme
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 lb ground beef
1/2 lg ground mild Italian sausage
1 egg

The Process:
Preheat the oven to 350 F

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring the broth and farro to a boil. Reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook until the farro is tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Slice the tops off of the peppers. Trim away the extra flesh from around the stem, coarsely chop, and set aside. Remove the membranes and seeds from the cavity.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Blanche the peppers for about 5 minutes, or until they are a vibrant green. Rinse the peppers in ice water and set aside to drain.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the onions, garlic and reserved chopped pepper. Sauté until tender and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Stir in the dice tomatoes, tomato sauce, capers, and seasoning. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Heat through and set aside.

In a large bowl combine the cooked farro, beef, sausage, egg and 1 cup of the tomato mixture. Mix thoroughly.

Arrange the peppers upright in a lightly oiled baking dish. Spoon the filling into each pepper cavity, doming the mixture slightly.

Spoon the remaining tomato mixture over the top. Bake, uncovered, about 60 minutes.

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