The Freshman Cook: Southwestern Stuffed Peppers~SRC Day!

Today is reveal day for The Secret Recipe Club and this month I was so lucky to be assigned the blog, Inquiring Chef. The blog is written by Jess, an American living in Bangkok with her husband Frank. Please stop by and see all her mouthwatering recipes and interesting posts about her amazing life! I was thrilled to see a recipe for southwestern food, as I dearly love the flavors and scents. Just yesterday I was at the grocery, and I realized that there was an incredible aroma in the air, and I was still in the parking lot!! As I walked closer to the store, I realized that the employees were roasting New Mexico Hatch Chili Peppers out in front of the store. Oh my goodness, there is nothing better. My nose was in heaven, and I didn’t want to go in to the store. The peppers had just arrived, and the store will roast them for free, if you purchase a case. Unfortunately, I can not use an entire case, but I am glad a lot of people can, because I got the benefit of that satisfying, comforting scent that stayed with me all day, and just made me sigh with pleasure. Oh, so good! 

Anyway, back to this incredibly, wonderful Southwestern Style Stuffed Peppers recipe!

You must make this! You will love it! I am giving you the recipe amounts as Jess wrote it. I cut it in half when I made it, as there were only two of us eating, and we ate every bit of it. I did add corn to the recipe and I left out the cilantro. I served them with a steak for my husband and a chicken breast for me. Yum!

Southwestern Stuffed Peppers

4 medium Bell Peppers (any color)

1 1/4 cup Grated Cheddar Cheese

2 cups Cooked Rice (brown or white)

3/4 cup Black Beans

1/2 teaspoon Chili Powder

1/2 teaspoon Cumin

1/2 teaspoon Salt

3/4 cup Salsa

1/2 small Onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup Cooked Corn

3 tablespoon Cilantro, chopped (more for garnish)

Sour Cream (optional for serving)

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

Thie first thing I did was make my beans from dried ones. 

I don’t eat much salt, and canned beans have salt.

You have to start your beans the day before for best results!
 Fill a bowl with water, and pour your beans in.

Rinse the beans thoroughly to remove dirt..

Sort them to get rid of any bad beans or possibly stones.

I sort them as I place them in the pot I will be cooking them in.

Add 3-4 cups of cold water for every 1/2 lb of beans. Let the beans soak overnight, or at least for 6-8 hours. Then drain the water, rinse again, and add 6 cups of hot water to the beans. Simmer the beans until desired tenderness is achieved, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. You should lid your pot, but leave a little escape for the steam. You can’t see mine, but it is on the side. Slice your peppers in half, lengthwise. Scrape out the core and remove the seeds. Set 1/4 cup of the cheese aside. In a large bowl, combine the 1 cup of cheese and the cooked rice. Add the black beans.
Also add in the chili powder, cumin, salt, salsa, corn and onion. Add the cilantro also. Mix all the ingredients together. Doesn’t it look so gorgeous? Gotta love the colors!! Spray your baking dish with pan spray, and then arrange the peppers in the dish. Place the rice mixture into the peppers. Pack it gently to compress  it to get in all the nook and crannys of the peppers. Bake the peppers until the rice starts to turn golden and crisp on the top, and the peppers soften, 15-20 minutes. Remember that 1/4 cup of cheese we set aside in the beginning of the recipe?  Sprinkle that cheese over the peppers and continue baking the peppers until it melts, about 3-4 minutes. Remove the peppers and place them on the plate.
Serve immediately, topping with sour cream if desired.
Enjoy! Thanks for joining me! Thanks Jess, for a wonderful recipe that I will make again and again!

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