Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Wild Rice and Couscous Stuffed Peppers

I decided to make my wife something "fancy" for dinner the other night, and I had been wanting stuffed peppers for awhile, so this is what I came up with. The texture and flavor of these peppers are delicious and when paired with some mashed potatoes and green beans, you've got a hearty winter meal on your hands.

NOTE: Israeli couscous is larger and more flavorful than the usual "instant" couscous, but you can use whichever is more convenient for you. Also, since wild rice takes some time to cook, it's handy to do it the night before.

Wild Rice and Israeli Couscous Stuffed Peppers:
6 bell peppers, assorted colors, halved
2 Tb. olive oil
1/2 tube Gimme Lean "sausage"
1/2 c. sliced mushrooms
1 leek (white and light green parts only), chopped
1 rib celery, chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
1 1/2 c. wild rice, cooked
1/2 c. Israeli couscous, cooked
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. basil
1/4 tsp. parsley
1/4 tsp. thyme
Sea salt and pepper to taste

1/2 c. Spaghetti sauce

Steam bell pepper halves for about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, saute the Gimme Lean, mushrooms, and celery in oil until browned. Add the garlic and leek and saute another 3 minutes or so. Remove from heat. Stir in wild rice, couscous, oregano, basil, parsley, and thyme. Salt and pepper to taste. Place steamed pepper halves in a casserole dish and fill with stuffing. Top with spaghetti sauce (I use about 2 Tb. per pepper). Cover and bake at 350F for 35-40 minutes.

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