With the recent glorious weather here in Saskatoon, can I just say how much I love eating outside? Last night it was dinner and this morning it was breakfast. There is something quite spectacular about sipping coffee while the robins sing from the treetops. As the sun shone through the leaves, falling on my rock garden, it’s as if the ferns were unfurling before my eyes. This summer stuff is going to be good stuff. I’ve got a feeling.
A handsome man came for dinner last night, which is all kinds of fantastic right there, but we sat outside for the first time this year and that made it extra special. Plus, there weren’t any bugs yet, so bonus points for that. On the menu were toasted turkey meatloaf, bacon and cheddar sandwiches as well as these gorgeous stuffed peppers. Muir Glen, the makers of fine canned organic tomatoes I’m sure you’ve seen on store shelves, graciously gave me the recipe to share with you. They are launching 4 new types of canned organic tomatoes this spring and have a contest to celebrate the tomato love. The winner will receive a $50 President’s Choice gift card, as well as 1 can each of Fire Roasted Diced, Fire Roasted Crushed, Plain Diced and Crushed with Basil. Because Muir Glen uses only the best ingredients in their products, the contest is called Only The Best. To make things fun, tell me ways you have wooed and impressed a loved one with only the best food. Did you make them a special dinner? Did you pack a picnic and eat it under tall trees in the park? I can’t wait to hear your stories! Leave me a comment and a winner will be chosen at random on Sunday June 5th. My apologies to my American friends - the contest is open to Canadians only.
So, about these stuffed peppers. I’m not normally a stuffed pepper lover but I quite enjoyed these. The filling is nice and spicy, thanks to the heat from the serrano pepper and smoked paprika. Not over the top spicy, but just enough heat so you can still taste the rest of the flavours. Adding a can of the Muir Glen fire roasted crushed tomatoes was fantastic. They taste so wonderful on their own, I was plucking them out of the can and eating them like so. Pepper jack cheese is stirred into the rice mixture, and the peppers are stuffed generously. Oh! I learned that if you slice a side off of the pepper and stuff it that way rather than slicing off the top, they lay nice and flat on the baking sheet. Just scoop out the seeds and leave the stem attached for a lovely presentation. Garnish with some grated Parmesan cheese and bake for just 30 minutes. These are best served nice and hot. Eating them outside is purely optional, though highly recommended.
Note: This is a sponsored post. Muir Glen compensated me financially and with product. The recipe is theirs. All opinions are my own, as always.
Fire Roasted Tomato Stuffed Peppers
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup diced onions
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 serrano pepper, minced
2 tsp smoked paprika
salt and pepper
1 ½ cups long grain rice
1 28 oz can Muir Glen fire roasted crushed tomatoes
1 ½ cups water
8 oz pepper jack cheese, shredded
salt and pepper to taste
6-8 large bell peppers
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic and serrano pepper and cook for about 5 minutes until the vegetables are soft. Stir in the smoked paprika and season with salt and pepper. Add the rice, the can of Muir Glen fire roasted crushed tomatoes and water. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for about 15-20 minutes until the rice has absorbed the liquid. Remove the rice from the heat. Let it cool down for about 15 minutes, then stir in the shredded pepper jack cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Preheat the oven to 350F. Slice the side off each pepper so that it will lie flat on the baking sheet. Scoop out the seeds with your fingers or a small spoon. Divide the rice and cheese mixture between the peppers and top with the grated Parmesan. Bake for about 30 minutes until the peppers are cooked through. Serve immediately. Makes 6-8 servings.