Stuffed Peppers

My aunt came to visit this week and I asked her one afternoon what she wanted for dinner.  I gave her the option of cube steak or stuffed peppers.  She immediately said stuffed peppers and mentioned she had not had those in a while.  I was perfectly okay with this choice.  I love making stuffed peppers because they are pretty forgiving as long as the peppers are cooked.

I substitute so many things when I make peppers.  It basically boils down to whatever I have on hand as to what they get stuffed with.  I’ve made a vegetarian stuffed pepper for a meatless Monday.  I substitute different meats, but I have to say mixing the hamburger with onion sausage is on point.  If I have carrots in the refrigerator I will usually dice one up and sauté it with the onions and garlic.  I’ve also used quinoa in place of rice for a healthier choice.  If I do not have fresh tomatoes on hand, I’ll use canned tomatoes (drained).  There are so many options with this recipe, so try it and then have fun experimenting with your own flavorful creations.

Stuffed Peppers

Makes 8 peppers

Ingredients:

8 Bell Peppers

1 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 Onion (diced)

4 Garlic Cloves (minced)

2 ½ Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce

1 Tsp Onion Powder

1 Tsp Garlic Powder

½ Cup Beef Broth

½ Tsp Paprika

1 LB Ground Hamburger Meat

1 LB Ground Onion Sausage

(You can use 2 LB Ground Hamburger Meat instead of Onion Sausage)

2 Tomatoes (diced)

3 Squirts Heinz 57 Sauce

1 Tsp Black Pepper

½ Tsp Salt

Small Handful of Pickled Jalapeños (diced)

1 Cup Cheese

2 Cups Water

Ingredients for Rice:

1 Cup Rice

2 Cups Water

1 Tbsp Butter

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a pan add olive oil and heat over low to medium heat.  Add onions and garlic.  Sprinkle with salt & pepper. Sauté until the onions are translucent.  Cook low & slow so they cook evenly & do not burn.  Transfer to another bowl.

Sauteed Onions

Add hamburger meat and onion sausage to the same pan.  Sprinkle with salt & pepper.  Brown meat & drain excess fat (unless cooking with a lean meat like turkey or deer meat).  Hey I already said I was country, so yes, I do cook with deer meat.  If you are mixing the meat with onion sausage I would not add salt.

Combine the meat & sautéed onions.  Add Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, beef broth, tomatoes, Heinz 57 sauce, and pickled jalapeños.  (The jalapeños do not add a lot of heat.  I would start out with a small amount at first if you are unsure about the jalapeños, but they do add a little more flavor to this dish.) Combine & heat on low heat.Stuffed Pepper Mixture

Cook rice according to package instructions.

Add cooked rice to the meat mixture.  Add 1 tsp pepper & ½ tsp salt.  Add 1 cup of cheese (I used Colby and Monterrey Jack).

Prepare bell peppers by cutting the tops off, cleaning out the flesh and seeds on the inside and washing the peppers.  Stuff the peppers with the rice mixture as shown below and place in a 9 inch x 12 inch baking dish.

Stuffed Peppers

Add 2 cups of water to bottom of dish and cover with aluminum foil.

Place in oven and bake for 45 minutes – 1 hour until peppers are tender.  Then, remove from oven and remove aluminum foil.  Sprinkle the tops with cheese and place back in the oven for about 4-5 minutes until cheese is melted.

Stuffed Peppers

*NOTE* If you have leftover mixture, you can freeze it or you can eat it as is.

What is one dish you have not had in a while?  Comment below.

In my next post find out what I do with my plain leftover rice.

If you like this recipe be sure to check out some of my other recipes below.  Follow my blog by entering your email address on the right side of this page to get the latest updates and recipes.

Enjoy!

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Applelishousness

Apples

Good Morning!  In my last post I mentioned that my husband and I went for a little day trip to Black Mountain and Old Fort, North Carolina.  We had a blast hiking and spending much needed quality time together.  The weather was absolutely perfect and I could not have asked for a better day except that maybe it could have lasted a little longer.  Hey, a girl can dream can’t she?!

Am I the only one who feels that the work week drags on and on and then the weekend flies by?  I have this theory that production might be a little higher if the work week was only four days and the weekend a mandatory three days.  I know! I know!  I’m dreaming again!  If only, right?!  The point is enjoy your weekend only if it is one or two days.

After my husband and I finished hiking in Old Fort we decided to drive to Hendersonville, North Carolina.  Oh yes…can anyone say APPLE COUNTRY?!!!  It was so pretty with apple orchard after apple orchard and the mountains in the background.  It was absolutely beautiful!  We stopped at one of the orchards called Grandad’s Apples.  We drove in surrounded by apples trees on one side and a fenced area on the other side with goats and a donkey.  In front, was a large barn.

apple-barn.jpg

We walked inside and the aroma of fresh baked apples filled the air.  Oh my goodness it smelled heavenly!  Inside the barn was a bakery, cider slush machines, jars of different jellies, jams, and oh yes apple butter along with many other items for sell.

We continued to the back of the barn where the barn was open to the outside and there sat rocking chairs for customers to enjoy their baked goodies.  But as soon as we reached this area of the barn my jaw dropped open and a sense of jealousy rushed through me.  If only I could enjoy this perfect view every day!  The view was gorgeous and relaxing!  There were apple trees upon apples trees on one side and on the other side a huge corn maze and a playground for kids.

Apple Orchard

There were picnic tables between the barn and the apple trees in the back of the barn.  That is where my husband and I spent about 30 minutes just sitting there talking and enjoying the view…and of course enjoying our goodies which included an apple dumpling topped with ice cream and a cider slush.  It was so delicious!

apple-dumpling.jpg

This was the perfect ending to a perfect day!  Before we decided to head back home we picked up a bushel, yes I said a bushel of apples.  I wanted to make apple butter, but after experiencing the apple dumplings and the cider I had other ideas in mind for these apples.  What was I going to make with ALL of these apples?

Let’s just say my Labor Day Monday was filled with apples after apples and I stayed in the kitchen for the majority of the day.  It was really nice though because my Mom and Dad came by for an unexpected visit, so Mom helped me in the kitchen whipping up all kinds of wonderful apple dishes.  We made apple butter, apple dumplings, and my personal favorite apple pie.  I’m a sucker for fresh apple pie right out the oven!

The rest of this week my blog will be filled with wonderful apple recipes that my Mom and I whipped up.  Enjoy!  If you enjoy any of these recipes please drop a comment and let me know.  Happy Apple Season!

I found this product helpful for speeding the process up for peeling, coring, and slicing the apples.  Click on the image to see more details about this product.  I highly recommend!

APPLE BUTTER

apple-butter.jpg

Ingredients:

20-25 Apples, peeled cored and sliced

3 Tsp Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

¼ to ½ cups Water

1 ½ cup Brown Sugar

3 Tsp Cinnamon

¼ Tsp All Spice

¼ Tsp Nutmeg

2 Tsp Lemon Juice

10-12 Tbsp White Sugar

Directions:

Place apples in a crock pot.  Add all the other ingredients over the apples and stir.  Cook the apples on low for 6-8 hours until apples are tender and break apart when stirred.  You can add more sugar if that is your preference.  I used a mixture of Jonagold, Gold Delicious, and Fuji apples.  Jonagold and Gold Delicious are sweet-tart apples and Fuji apples are sweet.  This combination creates a good balance for apple butter where a lot of sugar is not required.

After I cooked the apple butter, I sterilized some jars in a hot boiling water bath.  I poured the mixture into the jars to the bottom neck of the jar and added back to the hot water bath.  I boiled for about 10-15 minutes.  I then took the jars out of the water bath, set on a counter, and listened to the pops of the lids while I worked.  Hearing the tops of the jars pop is like music to my ears.  It lets me know my job is complete.

I hope you enjoy this apple butter as much as my husband and I do!

Apple Butter-2

Credits:

Pictures provided by Leaves, Loaves, and Life.  All rights reserved.