Stuffed Rainbow Colored Peppers with Cauliflower Rice and Italian Sausage

stuffed pepper

Who doesn’t love stuffed peppers? It’s old school comfort food at it’s best. It’s a weeknight family meal that’s simple to make with flavorful fillings packed into a rainbow colored edible vessel. They can be stuffed with starches, meats, cheese, beans or all veggies showcasing even different ethnic cuisines.

Needless to say the combinations are endless and for that reason stuffed peppers will be around for a long long time.

raw peppers

I love using an assortment of rainbow colored bell peppers, they still maintain their color and sweetness after baking, and the different colors make for a pretty presentation.

 

stuffed peppers

Cutting the peppers lengthwise allows for more of the filling to be packed into them. These peppers are packed tightly with Italian sausage, onions, garlic, mushrooms, chopped kale and I swapped out of white rice ( which you don’t even miss) for healthier cauliflower rice.

stuffed peppers

Of course some cheese is involved along with marinara which gives these stuffed rainbow colored peppers a delicious depth of flavor with a nice Italian twist!

stuffed peppers

Did I mention how good the leftovers are? Be sure to make enough so you can heat one up for lunch the next day you’ll be happy you did.

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5.0 from 2 reviews
Stuffed Rainbow Colored Peppers with Cauliflower Rice and Italian Sausage
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 4 rainbow colored bell peppers, cut lengthwise in half, then scoop out seeds and membrane
  • 1 lb. Italian sausage, casings removed and crumbled into small pieces
  • 2 cups frozen or fresh chopped riced cauliflower
  • 1 onion diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 handful kale or spinach, chopped
  • 6 large cremini mushrooms chopped
  • a handful of cherry or grape tomatoes, sliced
  • ¾ cup shredded mozzarella plus a little extra for garnishing the tops
  • ½ cup of grated pecorino
  • ½ cup marinara sauce for the filling and enough extra sauce to cover the bottom of a 9x12 baking dish
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon each, chopped basil and parsley
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 375
  2. Oil the bottom and sides of a 9x12 baking dish.
  3. Pour enough marinara sauce on the bottom of the baking dish to cover it all over.
  4. Place the 8 raw halves of the peppers into the baking dish.
  5. Brown the crumbled sausage in a pan until you see no pink at all, then remove and drain on paper towels.
  6. Wipe out pan of excess grease then add the onion, garlic and chopped mushrooms, riced cauliflower and cook til slightly soft then toss around and add the chopped kale to let it wilt.
  7. In a bowl add the drained sausage, cauliflower, cooked onion, garlic, mushrooms, kale, grated cheese, mozzarella, the sliced cherry tomatoes and the ½ cup of marinara sauce and herbs tossing well to incorporate everything.
  8. Fill each raw pepper with the filling, packing it in.
  9. Cover pan with foil and bake for 30 minutes then remove pan and change oven temp to 400
  10. Take the foil off, sprinkle the tops with a tablespoon or 2 of shredded mozzarella and some grated cheese.
  11. There will be a lot of moisture at the bottom of the pan from the foil being on but the higher temp will reduce it all.
  12. It's finished when you can say the peppers are nice and tender , test with the tip of a sharp knife and cheese is a little golden.
  13. Spoon some sauce on top of each and serve.

 

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Winter Citrus Salad Guaranteed to Brighten Your Day

citrus salad

Start the new year off right with this bright, winter citrus salad. It’s a welcome change from all the holiday and comfort foods we’ve been indulging in. Winter citrus is definitely a bright spot I look forward to when it finally arrives.

Not only is it refreshing but it perks up our taste buds and it’s also loaded with vitamins. For this salad I strictly used cara cara oranges, they’re my favorite and I always buy a bunch when I see them. I would have used a blood orange in this salad as well but it seems they’re hard to find in my neck of the woods this year.

You can use any citrus of your choice to make this salad, the brighter the color the better!

citrus salad

This salad is composed on a platter and is easy to assemble but first you need to slice up your citrus really pretty, removing as much of the pith as possible for a lovely presentation.

I use a serrated knife and cut off the top and bottom of the orange so it can stand flat. Then proceed to take off the peel by slicing from the top to the bottom following the curve of the fruit.

Take off only the peel and the white pith, as much as you can see leaving the flesh naked, then turn the fruit on it’s side and carefully slice crosswise.

citrus salad

There are no exact measurements here, your aim is to fill and arrange your platter with all the ingredients dispersed all around starting off with fresh arugula as the base. This salad is all about color!

Then thinly sliced fennel and radish rounds, the slices of citrus, small sized rings of red onion, nicoise olives, toasted hazelnuts, pomegranate seeds and some fennel fronds for garnish.

The vinaigrette is made with equal parts olive oil, fresh squeezed orange juice, a dollop of dijon to thicken it up a bit and salt and pepper.

Whisk it up and spoon it all over the salad right before you serve it.

There’s a bounty of citrus all around so now is the time to make good use of it!

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Seared Scallops Infused with Flavored Butter and Herbs

seared scallops

Are you planning on dining in instead of facing the crowds this New Years Eve? Have you been searching for a special dish to serve for an intimate dinner party or a romantic dinner for two?  Well look no more this is it!

Sweet and delicate, melt in your mouth seared scallops topped with a flavored butter that’s infused with the zest of lemon, shallot, garlic and a hint of spicy chili.

compound butter

The recipe itself is fairly simple to pull together, it’s basically all about the infused butter that will anoint the seared scallops with so much flavor, but equally as important are the steps you take to properly cook the scallops. It’s critical to avoid over cooking them, if you do they’ll become tasteless and rubbery and that would be such a waste!

In this recipe you’ll be using the large sea scallops, the smaller bay scallops are not what you want to be using here at all.

seared scallops

This could be the perfect first course with one scallop presented dramatically on baking sea shells, (Amazon). If you’re doing this for a main course you can use pretty gratin dishes.

As far as servings go, for a main I would say 4-5 per person because you’ll be having some sides with it. Scallops pair wonderfully with any green veggie and if you want some starch I like to serve maybe some couscous, garlic mashed potatoes or creamy polenta.

seared scallops

Grab a bottle of champagne, make this “fancy” dish and ring in the New Year at home!

Wishing you all a very healthy and happy 2019, thank you for all your support throughout the year I appreciate each and everyone of you, you’re the best! xo

You can follow me on Instagram to see what else I’m cooking up during the week.

5.0 from 3 reviews
Seared Scallops Infused with Flavored Butter and Herbs
 
You will definitely have extra infused butter leftover but it will be perfect for other things and it stays good for a couple of weeks in the fridge.
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 dozen large sea scallops, side mussel removed and patted completely dry
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 small garlic cloves grated on a microplane
  • 1 fresh red chili, veins and seeds removed and finely diced ( if you like it hotter add more)
  • 1 large shallot, finely diced
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • parsley for garnish, finely chopped
Instructions
  1. Heat you oven to 400F.
  2. Mix by hand in a bowl the softened butter with the garlic, zest, chili and shallot, taste for salt and pepper addition and set aside. Butter can be made ahead of time and refrigerated.
  3. Heat up a good non stick skillet on medium high heat until its screeching hot, making sure it's big enough so scallops have room and don't touch at all, you might have to do them in batches if your skillet isn't big enough to give them room.
  4. While skillet is heating up salt and pepper each side of the scallops.
  5. When you think the skillet is hot enough drizzle some olive oil on the bottom of the pan, when it starts to slightly smoke add the scallops and press them down gently on one side.
  6. Don't touch them or move them until you see a deep crust forming, then peek and check them out using tongs.
  7. When you see a deep crust take them out and place them crust side up in your gratin dish or baking shells.
  8. Add a good dollop of the infused butter on top, place them into the oven just so the butter melts down.
  9. Take them out, let rest a second, garnish with the chopped parsley and serve immediately.

 

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