The crisp fall air makes us crave hearty, healthy food, and stuffed peppers are always a great go-to. Herbs, salty prosciutto, and cooked rice are joined with beef, making this recipe a meal in itself with a loaf of crusty bread.
Makes 4 to 6 servings
4 to 6 large bell peppers
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound lean ground beef
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried
3⁄4 cup cooked rice
1⁄2 cup chopped prosciutto or ham
1⁄2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 cup Herbed Tomato Sauce (page 97) or purchased sauce
1. Cut top 1 inch off peppers. Remove and discard seeds from bottom of peppers. Discard stems from peppers, and chop flesh from tops.
2. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, and chopped peppers. Cook, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes, or until onion is translucent. Scrape mixture into a mixing bowl. Crumble beef into the skillet, and cook for 3 minutes, breaking up lumps with a fork, or until browned. Transfer beef to the mixing bowl with a slotted spoon.
3. Add parsley, oregano, rice, prosciutto, Parmesan, eggs, salt, and pepper to the mixing bowl, and mix well. Divide the mixture into peppers, stuffing them loosely, and arrange peppers in the slow cooker. Pour tomato sauce over peppers.
4. Cook on Low for 5 to 7 hours or on High for 21⁄2 to 3 hours, or until peppers are tender. Serve hot, spooning sauce on top of peppers.
Note: The dish can be prepared up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated, tightly covered. Reheat it, covered, in a 350ºF oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until hot.
From Italian Slow Cooking
Variations: Substitute ground turkey for the ground beef. Substitute cooked orzo or riso for the rice.
You can prolong the life of fresh herbs longer if you treat them like a bunch of flowers. Trim the stems when you bring them in from the market, and stick the stems into a glass of cold water. Keep them refrigerated.
Cider Mill Press loves slow cookers (especially during our cold Maine winters!), so we've developed a cookbook for every lifestyle! Our eight cookbooks feature everything from Gluten-Free to Paleo to Low-Acid and Low-Carb meals for the slow cooker, with recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, desserts, and side dishes.