Monday, July 28, 2008

Shrimp Stuffed Red Peppers


Last night, I stuffed some red peppers with shrimp, quinoa, beans, and garlic. It turned out very well:

Ingredients:
  • 6 red peppers
  • 1 lb shrimp
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 cup red quinoa
  • 3 stalks celery
  • 1/2 large onion
  • 2 heads of garlic
  • olice oil
  • honey
  • black pepper
  • kosher salt
  • paprika
  • cream cheese
  • Valentina hot sauce
Procedure:
First, I peeled and crushed the garlic and put it in a container with olive oil and pepper to soak. Then, I got the quinoa going. While that cooked, I carmalized the onions and celery with some garlic, pepper, salt, paprika, and olive oil. When that was done, I added some white wine. To that I added the black beans, honey, and salt. When the quinoa was done, that went in too. In a separate pan, I stir fried the shrimp in olive oil with some salt, pepper, and lime. The shrimp went in the big pot to finish up the stuffing.

To prepare the peppers, I cut the tops open like a pumpkin, cleaned out the seeds, and rinsed the peppers. I dropped some olive oil and Valentina's into each pepper. Then, I added the stuffing. I found that the shrimp acted as excellent plunger to shove more stuffing into a pepper. The amount of stuffing turned out perfect - each pepper was stuffed tight and none was left over. After stuffing, I coated the outsides of the peppers with some of the olive oil that the garlic had been soaking in. Then, several cloves of garlic went on top of each pepper.

The stuffed peppers were placed upright in a large baking pan and placed on the bottom rack of the oven, which was pre-heated to 250 degrees. I let that go for half an hour. Then, I decided to bump it up to 275 and let it go for almost an hour, checking every 20-30 minutes. When the peppers were wrinkled and soft, and the garlic was browning, I considered them done.

Resulting Deliciousness:
They turned out great! The only down side was that the shrimp had been frozen, and was not very high quality - I was surprised since Whole Foods stuff is usually pretty good. They were a little low on taste and the texture wasn't great. However, everything was still great. The stuffing is tasty and filling, and the pepper container added a whole level of deliciousness. While eating, I decided to add a sauce - cream cheese, honey, garlic olive oil, and Valentina's. That added a nice creamy texture and really put it over the top.

While the taste of the baked peppers was good, it wasn't nearly as good as roasted peppers. I think the next time I stuff peppers, I'll roast the peppers, peel them, then stuff them and skip or shorten the baking. That could be awesome.
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