Winter has come again to Colorado! A lot has happened over the last year and we will have a ton to update you on, but for now I thought I would share a quick dinner that doubles as a great leftovers for lunches for the week. When weeks get busy it is always nice to have something healthy that packs a punch and makes life easier and this fits the bill. My great grandmother had a fantastic recipe for Hungarian Stuffed Peppers that has long been a family favorite, especially great for a cold winter’s night. The thing about that recipe is that it is not the lightest food out there. Stuffed with ground meat and rice then simmered in tomato sauce makes for a hearty meal that “sticks to the ribs.” I found a way to lighten it up a little and still get a lot of flavor.
Our Whole Foods always has a ton of sausages with great flavors. I have found that one or two of these really pack a punch and add just enough flavor without adding too much bulk. When you spend a little more on something that adds lots of flavor, you don’t have to buy much and can get a lot out of it. I have used their teriyaki pineapple, or barbecue bacon sausages that add some interest without me having to do a lot of work. For the quinoa, I like to use a rainbow variety that adds some interest and color and cook it in some chicken stock that I keep in the freezer to add flavor. It helps a lot to take that one extra step rather than just using water. I always keep chicken stock in the freezer, but broth would work too. By sauteing spinach, you can get some extra veggies and all those nutrients in and it cooks down to almost nothing in no time, in the same pan you used to cook the sausage and then just toss in the quinoa. Make sure you like what you taste and stuff in the bell peppers. Bake for 15 min and you are done! I just throw them into tupperware for lunch and it is grab and go. The other great thing about this is that you can always use it to empty your fridge and use stuff up! Be creative; anything goes!
1 Cup Rainbow Quinoa
2 Cups Chicken Broth
2 Sausages, Sauteed
1 Bag Spinach
1 Shallot, thinly sliced
4 Bell Peppers, Tops & Seeds Removed
Prepare Quinoa in chicken broth. Saute shallot with the sausages (removed from casings and crumbled) until browned. Add spinach to the pan and squeeze lemon over the top and cover for 2 min. Stir the spinach into the sausage then add the quinoa. Taste and season as you like. Stuff the peppers and place upright in a baking dish. Bake at 375° for 15-20 min until peppers are tender. Enjoy immediately or as leftovers.
Enjoy the lead up to the holidays! One of my favorite times of the year! Happy cooking!