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I first made stuffed peppers from Kitchen Stewardship’s Everything Beans Book (“Mexican Stuffed Peppers”, p. 77). It uses ground beef and cheese which is great…unless you’re doing the Daniel Fast which requires abstinence from ingredients like meat and cheese for 21 days. This recipe is a tasty alternative with complete protein and healthy fats to keep your body strong through your fast (or if you have dietary restrictions). This recipe uses some olive oil to stir-fry the vegetables; if you are abstaining from oils, you can skip the stir-frying and combine all the vegetables in the rice pot; they will be less tasty, but if that helps you to stay in the “zone”, it will be worth it.
This recipe uses sprouted beans (and rice); that is easy for me because I buy dried beans, soak them, and sprout them before cooking in my crock pot overnight; I have got into the routine of soaking and sprouting grains and legumes whenever I buy them. Sprouting increases the nutritional content which is so important in a fast; if you aren’t a “sprouter” yet, don’t worry; you can easily prepare to sprout rice and beans several days in advance of making this recipe, or buy canned beans for now and set a goal to sprout dried beans for next time you make this dish.
Overview: Cook sprouted rice for 50 minutes; While rice is cooking, chop vegetables and prepare bell peppers. Stir-fry onions, green peppers and eggplant in a cast iron skillet. When rice is finished, add “natural” salsa, seasonings, sprouted beans, and avocado to the pot, followed by the stir-fried vegetables. Spoon bean & rice filling into prepared peppers in a glass casserole dish. Bake at 350F until the peppers are cooked. Serve with cooked sweet corn. Feeds 4 adults. See step 10 for Stuffed Pepper Soup instructions.
- 4 Organic Bell Peppers (Bell Peppers are one of the worst pesticide offenders; make sure to buy organic or grow your own) of any color; red is my favorite!
- 1 cup Sprouted Rice (or organic brown rice)
- 2 cups Filtered Water
- 2 cups Sprouted & Cooked Black Beans (canned beans will do in a pinch)
- 16 oz Natural Salsa (save the jar; see below)
- 2 Avocados
- 1 Red Onion
- 4 Green Peppers
- 2-4 Eggplants, depending on size (2 cups chopped)
- 2 TBSP Olive Oil (test in ‘fridge overnight to make sure it solidifies, otherwise it is fake)
- 1 TBSP Organic Chili Powder
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- 1 bag non-GMO frozen corn
- Large Pot (avoid nonstick)
- Measures: 1 cup, 1 TBSP
- Sharp knife and chopping board
- Washtub with with warm water and 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar (optional)
- Kitchen towel (optional)
- Glass casserole dish (9″ x 13″ recommended)
- Cast Iron Skillet (or a pan you can fry veggies in; avoid nonstick coatings)
- Oven mitten (optional)
- Wooden cooking utensils (I use bamboo)
- Spoon and fork
- Glass Salsa jar (optional)
- Cook rice and filtered water in a large pot for about 50 minutes.
- Soak the peppers and eggplant in the warm vinegar solution for a few minutes to clean. Rinse and pat them dry with a kitchen towel.
- Heat the cast iron skillet on medium heat. If you don’t have an insulated handle, please use an oven mitten to pick up your skillet.
- Chop the onion, eggplant, and green peppers according to size preference, “finely” if you aren’t a fan of chunky veggies or coarsely if you like a slightly different flavor in each bite. Leave the skin on the eggplant to conserve nutrients (i.e. don’t peel it). Chop the avocado lengthwise in half by rotating the blade around the giant seed (“pip”-U.K., “pit”-U.S.A.) in the middle; use a spoon to scoop out the green, fleshy contents and mash with a fork. For the bell peppers, cut in half from stem to stern and de-seed; it is up to you if you want to take the stalks off. Sometimes removing them weakens the pepper halves. Arrange the eight pepper halves in the glass casserole dish.
- Add Olive Oil to the skillet and fry the chopped onion until translucent, followed with the chopped green pepper, and finally the chopped eggplant. Fry for a few minutes until cooked through, then turn off the heat and set the skillet aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- When the rice is done, add salsa, seasonings, mashed avocado and beans. If you are using canned beans, make sure to rinse them in the colander first; if you are using frozen beans, extend the cooking time until the beans are thawed (a few minutes).
- Empty the skillet contents into the pot; stir. Using the “avocado spoon”, scoop out the stuffing into the pepper halves.
- Bake the stuffed peppers in the oven at 350F for 20-30 minutes, depending on how crispy you like the peppers to be. To reduce baking time, you may steam the pepper halves while the rice is cooking (put steamer insert over rice pot) and then bake them stuffed for 10 minutes. Personally, I prefer my peppers to have a little crunch to them: 20 minutes in the oven is fine by me!
- If you have extra stuffing leftover in the pot, store in a clean glass salsa jar (or to be super-frugal, put it in the salsa jar you just used!) You can use it later to make Stuffed Pepper Soup by adding 2 cups of Broth (vegetable or bean for the Daniel Fast) or Stock (if you’re not fasting).
- Wash the pot and add frozen corn; cook according to directions on the packet.
- When peppers are done, serve two halves per adult with plenty of sweet corn on the side. Voila!