|Ready to Bake|
Recipe adapted from Mom’s
As of last week it’s been 10 years since my mom died. Cooking was her passion, and it was indeed sad when she had to give it up due to disability in her latter years. Still, she remained interested in food and its preparation till the end, watching cooking show on TV and perusing menus from local restaurants. Even when she was barely able to feed herself, she enjoyed a rich variety of foods and knew which menu items were tastiest. Like many of Mom’s recipes that I’ve blogged, stuffed peppers were made without a written recipe. Throughout the years I’ve made many attempts to recreate this classic Polish recipe. Finally, I’ve gotten pretty darn close.
|Classic Polish Stuffing|
The slight bitterness of green bell peppers provides contrast with the sweet and savory flavor of the filling, but any other roundish pepper can be used. Red, yellow, and orange bells look festive. Poblanos, featured in some of my photos, are an unusual alternative. They add both a bitter note and spicy heat to the dish.
Be sure to use a quality, fresh paprika. Spanish paprikas are excellent. My favorite brand, La Odalisca, is currently unavailable, but purchasing fresh paprika in bulk at a local herb store is a good alternative.
serves 6 - 8
~6 green bell peppers, 2 - 2½ lbs.
1 tbsp. olive oil
1¼ lb. ground turkey
1½ cup chopped onion
½ tbsp. olive oil
1½ cup cooked white rice with 1/8 tsp. salt
¾ cup chopped, seeded tomatoes
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. paprika
½ tsp. salt
15 oz. can tomato sauce
Cut bell peppers in half lengthwise and remove stem, seeds, and membranes. Parboil pepper halves in large pot of salted water for 3 – 4 minutes, until slightly softened but still bright green (if using thin poblanos, parboil time will be shorter). Remove with tongs, blotting off water with towel. Arrange in baking pans.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Preheat electric frying pan to 350 degrees F. Coat bottom of pan with about 1 tbsp. olive oil and add ground turkey. Break up meat with wooden spatula and stir frequently till cooked through and evenly browned, about 8 minutes.
Add onions to pan and add another ½ tbsp. oil. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions are golden, about 5 minutes.
Add cooked rice, chopped tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, salt, and half of the can of tomato sauce (about ¾ cup). Stir till well combined. Bring mixture to simmer to blend flavors, then turn off heat.
Fill pepper halves with stuffing using a large rounded spoon. Top with remaining tomato sauce.