Thursday, February 3, 2011

Southwestern Stuffed Peppers

Another colorfully yummy recipe.  I made this for Brooke and Tom's wedding reception, and it was a big hit.  I used whole red, yellow and orange bell peppers for a really festive look!  The enchilada sauce has a little heat to it.  For an added kick, use hot Italian sausage.

1 recipe  Zesty Red Enchilada Sauce (click for recipe)
6 large, sweet, red peppers (pick wide peppers with a nice vertical shape)
1/2 pound Italian sausage, sweet or hot, browned and drained
1 (8 ounce) package corn bread stuffing mix (remove any seasoning packet if one exists - you won't need it)
2 cups Jack cheese, shredded
1/2  - 1 can chicken broth
1-15 ounce can diced tomatoes, drained

Prepare one recipe Zesty Red Enchilada Sauce.  Set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Note:  the first time I made these peppers, I baked the peppers without steaming them first.  I ended up with a lot of excess liquid.  By steaming them for a few minutes in the microwave, you eliminate some of the natural liquid retained in the peppers.

Cut the tops (stem end) off of six, nicely shaped peppers, and carefully remove the seeds.  Place peppers, upside-down, in a greased casserole dish.  Cover with plastic wrap and microwave for about five minutes (watch and rotate so they don't burn).  Remove from microwave, and check to see if the peppers have lost some of their liquid.  You want them to remain firm enough to stuff.  Drain the liquid and set aside to cool.

In large bowl, combine the sausage, dry stuffing, cheese, and tomato.  Add enough of the broth to softened the dry cornbread.  Season with salt and pepper.  Stuff the meat/bread mixture into the peppers, and place in the casserole dish in the upright position.  Pour enchilada sauce over the peppers and bake, uncovered for one hour (baste with the enchilada sauce every fifteen minutes).

Serve with Fiesta RiceRancho Red Beans, Black Bean and Avocado Salsa, roasted corn on the cob, or Comfort Corn Pudding.

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