Thursday, February 7, 2013

For the Foodies: Southwest-Style Stuffed Peppers

Ingredients


2 large green sweet peppers
8 ounces lean ground beef
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 14.5-ounce can low-sodium tomatoes, undrained and cut up
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup long grain rice
1 4.5-ounce can diced green chili peppers, drained
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup loose-pack frozen whole kernel corn
2 tablespoons shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese

Step 1


Halve sweet peppers lengthwise, removing stem ends seeds, and membranes. Immerse sweet peppers into boiling water for 3 minutes. Invert on paper towels to drain well.



Step 2 


In a large skillet cook ground beef and onion until meat is brown and onion is tender. Drain off fat. Stir in undrained tomatoes, water, uncooked rice, chili peppers, chili powder, garlic salt, and cumin. Bring to boiling. Stir in corn. Return to boiling; or until rice and corn is tender.








Step 3


Place pepper halves in a 2-quart square baking dish. Spoon meat mixture into peppers. Spoon any remaining meat mixture into the dish around the peppers. Bake peppers, covered, in a 375 degree oven for 20 minutes or until heated through. Uncover; sprinkle with cheddar cheese. Bake 2 minutes more. Makes 4 servings.





Nutrition Facts Per Serving


238 calories, 7 g total fat (3 g saturated fat), 38 mg cholesterol, 406 mg sodium, 30 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 15 g protein

The Lowdown

Tonight's dish was a real treat, at least for me it was. As a kid, my mother used to cook a similar dish and I wasn't a fan of the green pepper. It seems my kids took that trait from my childhood. Today, I enjoyed the green pepper and all the goodness it offered.

Quick note, I made a few modifications from the list above. For some reason, I forgot to buy two cans of tomatoes, green chilies, and cumin. No worries, I found a few jars of salsa in the refrigerator and kept it moving. Perfect!

Even before I put the meat mixture in the green pepper bowls, I knew it was going to be good. The aroma had a distinct southwestern twang, which I enjoyed. The green from the sweet pepper contrasted nicely with the red tone tomato-based rice. Together, it made for an interesting, and quite hearty, dish.

For the kids, they thought the meal was a bit spicy. They managed to make a nice dent in the rice, but left the green pepper to die alone. For the adults, it was a pleasant meal that quickly fills you up. I wouldn't need a second serving.

Should I make this meal again, which I would thoroughly enjoy, it would be exactly as I prepared it, salsa and all. The kids, like yesterday, would prefer I pile the rice with cheddar cheese. I disagree.

Overall, an enjoyable meal that pleases the eyes as well as the palate. Enjoy!

Source: Better Homes and Gardens New Dieter's Cookbook

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Damond L. Nollan, M.B.A.

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