Monday, November 8, 2010

Sausage and Spinach Stuffed Peppers

Psssst! Do you want to hear a secret?

I like books!

LOL! I probably already know that if you've been hanging around for a while.

But if you haven' you know!

Now you are probably wondering what the heck my little secret has to do with these stuffed peppers.

Well. Let me tell you.

I don't just like books. I love books. It's a real problem. Especially when you live in the middle of nowhere (an hour and a half away from the nearest book store!).

Since we are a military family, we tend to move a lot.

In every town I've lived in, I usually start up a book group. Except for here that is.

When we were in Syracuse, NY I had a great book group. It was so much fun to have the ladies come over and we would sit around talking about books, drinking wine and eating great food.

Here's another little reveal of mine. I hated cooking!

The Hubble was the cook in the household back then. He would slave away and make dinner for me and my book group ladies. When we were all happily eating and chatting, he would slink away into the office and play with his music while we continued to do our thing. Wasn't he the sweetest??

One of my favorite things to have him make were stuffed peppers. The man makes a mean stuffed pepper.

Sadly, I haven't had The Hubble's stuffed peppers in years! So when I saw this recipe in Food & Wine magazine I immediately set out to make it. And boy am I glad I did!

These were so flavorful and the stuffing was so moist and just delicious. And what's even better is that they are simple to make as well! A few days after we ate these, I was making our weekly menu and asked The Hubble for ideas. He wanted me to make these again!

And guess what...we are having these for dinner tonight! So I thought I would share them with you so you can enjoy them soon as well!

Here we go...

Ingredients: Peppers (the recipe calls for Italian frying peppers, I used Poblano peppers), white bread, extra virgin olive oil, low sodium chicken broth, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, pine nuts, an egg, red onion, sausage, fresh spinach, tomato sauce, milk, salt and pepper.

Start by tossing the spinach into a large skillet and cooking it on high heat until it wilts (about a minute).

Once wilted, press all the water out of the spinach then chop it up.

In a large bowl, add the chopped up bread, milk, cheese and egg. Knead it all together to form a kind of paste.

Slice a slit down one side of each sausage and remove the casing. Add the sausage to the bread mixture. Toss in the onion, spinach and pine nuts to the mixture as well. Salt and pepper to taste.

Using your hands, mix everything up together until it is all well combined. And...ummm...don't forget to take off your wedding rings...otherwise you will be cleaning sausage out of the crevices for days afterward. Eeeewwww!

Cut the peppers in half lengthwise. Leaving the stem on the pepper, remove the seeds and membrane from inside the pepper.

Then stuff 'em!!!!

In a very large skillet (hopefully the one you wilted the spinach in, I used an electric skillet) heat your olive oil until shimmering. Then place the peppers, stuffing side down, in the skillet and cook over high heat until well browned, about 4 minutes.

Flip them over and cook for the same amount of time on the back side.

Mix together the chicken broth and tomato sauce. Pour it over the peppers. Cover and cook until the stuffing is cooked through and the peppers are tender, about 5 to 8 minutes.

Serve them topped with extra sauce and accompanied with French bread. Enjoy!!

Sausage and Spinach Stuffed Peppers
Adapted from Food & Wine

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  • 1 (5 oz) bag baby spinach leaves.
  • 2 slices white sandwich bread, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup milk (I used skim)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 Tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons pine nuts
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped red onion
  • 1 pound sweet or hot Italian sausage (I used sweet turkey Italian sausage)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 large or 8 small poblano peppers
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup canned tomato sauce
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  1. In a very large skillet, cook the spinach on high heat until just wilted, about 1 minute. Drain and press out the excess water; chop. 
  2. In a large bowl add the chopped bread, egg, milk and cheese; knead into a paste.
  3. Slice the sausage casing and remove the meat from the casing. To the bread mixture add the sausage meat, pine nuts, onions and spinach. Salt and pepper to taste. Knead all ingredients together with clean hands until well combined.
  4. Slice peppers in half lengthwise, leaving stems intact. Remove seeds and membranes. Stuff with meat mixture.
  5. In large skillet, heat oil until shimmering. 
  6. Place stuffed peppers, filling side down, in skillet and cook over high heat until well browned, about 4 minutes. Flip peppers over and repeat on bottom side, cooking another 4 minutes.
  7. Combine chicken broth and tomato sauce, pour over peppers in skillet. Cover and cook until meat is cooked through and peppers are tender, about 5-8 minutes.
  8. Serve with sauce and French bread.
  9. Enjoy!!
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