An Oldie But A Goodie
Friday nights are sacred in the Learning As I Chop Household. H and I reserve it for ourselves and only go out when absolutely necessary. Though we sometimes invite friends over, our normal routine is a home cooked dinner-a-deux, followed by catching-up on our favorite shows. As you’ve probably noticed by now, we tend to eat pretty traditional foods. Our weekly menus probably mirror Betty Draper’s, minus the cigarettes and gin. A beginning chef, I’m interested in mastering the basics – understanding spices, tools and ingredients. Last night’s plan therefore included an oldie but a goodie: stuffed peppers.
Whenever I choose to make something classic, I always turn to my textbook, the J of C. The first time I made this recipe, I learned to peel a tomato. Yes, I literally stood there with a peeler, trying to remove the skin.Then it dawned on me to read some instructions. After pulling the tomato from boiling water, and watching the skin fall-off, I was thrilled. It was so satisfying and I was hooked on expanding my cooking skills. Here’s an example of my peeled tomato:
I’ve used this J of C recipe many times and it never fails to please. Another tip? Buy a rice cooker. No more accidental burning and your rice is fluffy and ready to throw into the mix. Here are the peppers being steamed before stuffing. A little bit of water and covering the pot works just as well as a traditional steamer.
Tonight, feeling adventurous, I tweaked the recipe and added ½ a cup of shredded cheddar cheese before baking. Puts a Mexican spin on an American classic. If it suits your fancy, you can also pour some tomato sauce on top. We use Newmans Bombolina since I’m still mastering my own. Lastly, I’m a big fan of oven —> table cookware, and bake my peppers in a cute dish by Emile Henry. We received four different Emile Henry pieces for our wedding, and I couldn’t be happier. Definitely recommend this brand if you’re looking to build a registry.
Though I served it together with salad, bread and wine, these stuffed peppers make for a simple and satisfying dish. Very efficient, they’re a protein, vegetable and grain in one! Here’s the final product.