Photo by Annaliese Bischoff
Provenance of Dish
My Hungarian grandmother showed me how to make stuffed peppers when I was 5 years old. This recipe updates a classic version. I have experimented with adding more mushrooms to the filling while reducing the ground meat. The size of the peppers dictates the amount of filling, thus the variable number of peppers given. And despite some shrinkage from the mushrooms cooking, the expansion of the rice and quinoa seems more dominant. I like the way all the ingredients play together in this recipe.
• 1/8 cup red quinoa, uncooked, soaked in water
• 3/8 cup brown rice uncooked, soaked in water
• 1 ½ cups of white button mushrooms, cleaned and diced
• 3 oz. farm quality ground beef
• 1 oz. farm quality ground pork (or substitute 1 oz. of ground beef if you prefer)
• 1/4 cup finely chopped yellow onion
• 1/4 cup grated carrot
• 1/2 teaspoon fresh chopped thyme leaves
• 1/2 teaspoon fresh chopped marjoram leaves
• 1/2 tablespoon premium quality Hungarian sweet paprika
• ½ tsp. kosher salt, or to taste
• pinch of freshly ground black pepper
• 2-3 plump red bell peppers*
• 2-3 plump orange bell peppers*
• 32 oz. canned tomatoes (with juice)
• 1/2 tablespoon sweet red Hungarian paprika
• 1 bay leaf
• fresh chopped parsley for serving
• Soak the quinoa and rice in water for an hour and then drain off the water.
• Clean the mushrooms and dice (using a small chop, as illustrated in the picture)
• Gently mix the beef, pork, mushrooms, onion, carrot, thyme, marjoram, paprika, salt and pepper together with the drained quinoa and rice for the filling (roughly 3 cups).
• Slice off the top end and stem of each pepper. Clean out the seeds and cut away any excess pith. *Note: Depending upon the cavity size of the peppers, you will need a total of 6 peppers if they can each hold 4 ounces of filling, or 4 peppers if they can handle 6 ounces.
• Divide and spoon in the filling into the peppers leaving about ½ inch from the top to allow for the expansion of the quinoa and rice.
• Arrange the peppers in a large Dutch oven and add the canned tomatoes, sweet paprika, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then cover and let simmer for about 40 minutes. While cooking, ladle some broth over the peppers a few times. Make sure the quinoa and rice are fully cooked. Continue cooking until they are.
• Serve with a ladle of tomato broth in a bowl. Garnish with chopped flat leaf parsley.