Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Orzo-Stuffed Bell Peppers

Her white fox fur trailing casually along the floor, she swept into the room with a look of disdain. Unfortunately, that room was the kitchen. 

Must I?” she asked, speaking to no one in particular. 

“Yeth!” squeaked the small voice of her conscience.

Her silver evening gown clung to her body like the cello wrap she’d at that very moment unfurled to cover a jar of pickles. “Why?” she lamented. “Why, why, why?”

“Becauth your family hath to eat!” Her #$@! conscience, again.

She puffed on the stub of an unlit cigaret shed poked into an opera-length holder. Tossing the butt, she ground it into the kitchen floor with the toe of her silver stiletto shoe.

“I knew this day would come! Phoo-ey!” she grumped. Leaving the room, she peeled off the dress and slipped the faux fur back to its usual place as a mop head. She returned in a baggy orange T-shirt emblazoned with “ORK”, the “NEW” and the “Y” having lost an unfortunate battle with bleach. 

“So let’s get on with it, already …”

Orzo-Stuffed Bell Peppers:

1 red bell pepper 
1/3 c. (80 mL) dry orzo
3/4 c. (180 mL loosely packed measure) baby spinach, stemmed and leaves torn roughly the same size
2-to-3 tbsp. (15-to-30 mL) crumbled goat cheese (chèvre) 
1 tsp. (5 mL) olive oil
Dash salt 
Dash freshly ground pepper
Parsley flakes, as garnish

Preheat oven or toaster oven to 375 deg. F.

Slice and halve pepper lengthwise. Removing seeds and dice. Set aside. In small saucepan, add orzo to 1-1/2 c. (350 mL) boiling, lightly salted water, cooking 5 min., or until tender. Turn off heat under pot. Drain orzo, returning hot orzo to hot pot. Add spinach, goat cheese, olive oil, and seasonings, stirring quickly to allow spinach to wilt and cheese to partially melt.

Lightly season insides of halved pepper. Overfill with orzo mixture, packing lightly. Cover loosely with foil, baking 35-to-40 min. on parchment-lined tray or baking sheet. Sprinkle with parsley flakes, just before serving. Serves two.

Note: To balance these filled peppers and ensure they bake evenly, balance them on baking rings or on canning rings.

You’ll want about this much baby spinach!

Loosely pack it down to 3/4 c. (180 mL)

Crumble goat cheese with fingers

(Shhh! Secret ingredient to keep everything balanced!)

Pret-ty, pret-ty, pret-ty! Low-cal, great taste! 

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