Monday, January 6, 2014

Skinny Stuffed Peppers

I love, love, love how this dish turned out.  And only 300 calories per serving (1 pepper)!  Great flavors and quite filling too.  Make sure though to give yourself plenty of time to make it, as the cooking itself is around 1 hour and a half.  But it's well worth the wait.  Great dish!  Enjoy!
Ingredients:
-4 bell peppers (any color you want)
-salt and pepper
-1 tsp + 1 Tbs extra virgin olive oil, divided
-2 cloves garlic, minced
-1 small onion, finely chopped
-8 oz lean or extra lean ground beef
-1 tsp dried oregano
-1/2 tsp cinnamon
-1/2 tsp ground cumin
-2 Tbs tomato paste, divided
-1 cup chicken broth
-1/2 cup long-grain white rice
-1/3 cup dry lentils
-1 1/2 cups water
-1 tsp dried dill
Directions:
Preheat oven to 400 F.  Cut the tops off each pepper, but do not discard them.  Clean the peppers until no more seeds are found inside.  Dry them off and place them in an 8x8 baking dish.  Sprinkle the inside of each pepper with a little salt and pepper.
Heat 1 tsp of the olive oil in a large skillet.  Add the garlic and onion and cook until soft, about 3 minutes.  Add the beef, oregano, cinnamon and cumin.  Mix well.  Cook until beef is no longer pink (make sure the crumble it as it cooks, so that you don't have clumps).  Add 1 Tbs of the tomato paste and mix until well incorporated.
Stir in the broth, rice and lentils.  Season with some salt and pepper.  Give it a good stir and remove skillet from stove.  Set it on the counter for a few minutes, until all the liquid is absorbed.  Give it another stir and divide the mixture equally between the 4 prepared peppers.
Mix the water with the remaining 1 Tbs olive oil and 1 Tbs tomato paste.  Mix well then pour in the baking dish, around the peppers.  Cover tightly with foil and place in preheated oven.  Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Carefully transfer the peppers onto a different dish.  Pour the liquid into a small saucepan and bring to a boil.  Season with salt and pepper, and add the dill.  Let it boil until thickened and reduced to about 1/2 cup of sauce.
Serve it along with the stuffed peppers.  Enjoy!
Slightly adapted from a Food Network recipe.

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