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March 24, 2015

life is so full.  and for the most part, in great ways. yet i have that definite desire for spaciousness – a second cup of tea, a lazy conversation & longer stretches of silence.  i try to use sunday afternoons to prepare for the week so that weekday mornings don’t feel rushed (i become less of a morning person when i have to go work) & i don’t feel d-o-n-e at days’ end.  stuffed peppers are a great cook-them-now-eat-them-later dish as they get even better after a day.  i am not a fan of green bell peppers so, as always, use what you like – that includes using something else, like zucchini, if you don’t like peppers.

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stuffed peppers (serves 6 – 8)
6 large peppers – i like yellow, red & orange
2 T olive oil
1 large onion
3 lbs. ground beef (no more than 85% lean)
1/4 C rice, uncooked
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. dried oregano
red chili flakes, to taste
salt & pepper, to taste

1/3 C pignoles
1/2 C parmesan cheese, grated
fistful of chopped parsley

6 C tomato sauce of your choice, preferably homemade

preheat oven to 350 degrees.

cut around the stem of the peppers so there is a hole in the tops & empty the seeds.  place in a baking dish into which they fit snugly.

add the olive oil and onions to a large skillet & saute until soft.  add beef & brown.  add rice and stir well.  add herbs, chilis, salt & pepper.  there should be some liquid from the meat in the pan – if not, add a bit of water, about 1/4 cup, and cover for 15 minutes.  add pignoles, parmesan & parsley.

spoon mixture into peppers & pour sauce into baking dish around peppers.  bake until peppers are soft, about 1 hour.

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