As many of you know, we grow a garden here at the house every summer. One thing we like to do is try out a new plant (or two) and see how it does. This year one of the newbies that we tried were Cajun bell peppers. They look like banana peppers on steroids, and taste a bit like poblano peppers. The little beauties were just begging to be stuffed, so I obliged!
I served the peppers with a side of stewed okra and tomatoes. The flavors of the two went so well together, I felt obligated to include both recipes in this post. I hope you like them.
For the Cajun Stuffed Peppers
- 6 Cajun Bell Peppers (You can substitute Poblano Peppers, or possibly Bell Peppers, if needed.)
- 2 large ripe Tomatoes, prepared
- 1/2 pound lean Ground Beef
- 1/2 cup dry Instant Rice
- 1 Cayenne Pepper, minced
- 1/4 cup Onion, minced
- 1 Tbs Garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup shredded Colby Jack Cheese
- Worcestershire Sauce
- Tony's Creole Seasoning (see picture)
- Pepper Jack Cheese, sliced
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray a 9 x 9 baking dish with cooking spray, and set it to the side.
- Prepare the tomatoes by filling a large pot 2/3 of the way with water, and bring it to a boil. Once boiling, drop in the tomatoes one at a time. Boil them until the skin splits open. Immediately remove the tomatoes to a bowl of ice water. Once cool to the touch, remove the skins and pull the tomato meat from the core and stem. Place the meat and juice into a medium bowl, and discard the rest. (This is where it gets fun...) Tear the tomato into smaller pieces. Just get right in there with your fingers and have a ball. (You could use a can of diced tomatoes instead, but where is the fun in that?!)
- To your tomatoes, add the ground beef, rice, cayenne, onion, garlic, and shredded cheese. Sprinkle it with a bit of Worcestershire, and season with salt, pepper, and tony's according to your tastes. Mix well.
- Wash the peppers. Remove the tops, and seeds.
- Using a spoon, fill each pepper with the meat mixture. Be sure to press out any air bubbles trapped in the bottom of the peppers.
- Arrange the stuffed peppers in the prepared pan and place any left over stuffing around and in between the peppers.
- Cover with aluminum foil and bake in the preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes. Remove the cover and bake for an additional 25 minutes, or until the peppers begin to brown.
- Top each pepper with sliced pepper jack cheese and return to the oven for 5 more minutes, or until the cheese melts.
For the Stewed Okra and Tomatoes
- 1 (14.5 oz) can Sliced, Stewed Tomatoes
- 2 cups frozen Sliced Okra (not breaded)
- Onion Powder
- Garlic Powder
- Place the tomatoes (including juice) and okra in a saucepan.
- Season with salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder, and Tony's to taste.
- Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring occasionally.
- Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer.
- Continue to simmer until ready to serve. (Be careful not to cook it for too long, or the okra can start to fall apart. - I started my okra and tomatoes after I removed the foil from the peppers.)
Both recipes make 3 servings each, but can easily be increased as needed.