Stuffed peppers is a dish common in many cuisines. In Spain and Mexico stuffed peppers are a huge part of their cuisines, where they are called rellenos. Like these Authentic Mexican Chile Rellenos.
Stuffing peppers are also popular in India and many Scandinavian countries. In the Southwestern part of the United States, there is a recipe for a Stuffed Poblano Pepper.
When you think of stuffed bell peppers, you probably think of meat, rice, and vegetables. And that is typical for a stuffed bell.
This recipe is Italian inspired. It calls for savory but sweet Italian sausage and tomato paste made from Italian tomatoes. But the rice has been substituted for Israeli couscous.
What Is Couscous
Couscous is a pasta made from semolina, the same flour used to make many Italian style pastas. It is also a starch, just the same as rice.
Though couscous originates from the Mediterranean, Israeli couscous was invented in the 1950’s due to a rice shortage.
Moroccan couscous is commonly served in North African, Moroccan, Tunisian, and Algerian cuisine.
Consider having it stocked in your pantry as it an easy and fast ingredient alternative to rice, quinoa, and noodles.
These Italian inspired stuffed sweet bell peppers are really simple and quick to prepare in just under 30 minutes.
Italian Sausage Stuffed Peppers
2 large bell peppers, green (can opt for red, yellow or orange)
1 medium white onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup Israeli couscous
1/3 pound sweet Italian sausage
1/4 cup tomato paste, preferably from Italian tomatoes
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Cut bell peppers in half lengthwise and remove seeds. Brush pepper halves with avocado oil and season with salt and pepper.
Place halves cut side down on a baking sheet. Roast in preheated oven until peppers are soft and a little charred, 15-18 minutes.
Place a oven proof nonstick skillet over medium high heat and add a tablespoon of avocado oil.
Add onions and sauté until softened, about 4-5 minutes.
Next add garlic and sausage to the skillet with the onions. Cook breaking up sausage into pieces until browned and cooked through, about 4-5 minutes.
Next add tomato paste, couscous and mix in well. Add t2 cups of water and stir till mixed.
Bring to a boil and cook stirring often until couscous is tender and mixture has thickened, about 8-10 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
When peppers are done roasting remove from oven. Turn off oven and turn broiler to high.
Stuff each halved pepper with meat mixture, as mush as will fit. Nestle each pepper half into remaining meat mixture in skillet. Top peppers with cheese evenly.
Place oven proof skillet under broiler until cheese has melted and browns a little, about 2-3 minutes.
CAUTION: Do not walk away from oven, keep an eye on peppers that they do not burn.
Remove skillet from under broiler. Plate by spooning meat mixture onto plate and top with two stuffed pepper halves.
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