Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Hesitation sometimes leads to great things {Cabbage Stuffed Peppers}

We had just gotten back from our favorite butcher shop, and the day before we had picked up some fresh produce from the market. My fridge was stocked with lots of yummy ingredients, and I was getting ready to make dinner. I hadn't yet done my rough meal planning for the week, and I wasn't sure what I wanted to eat...

You see, I was hesitating between stuffed cabbage rolls and stuffed bell peppers. And I really couldn't decide. Both meals are complete, in that there is a protein and a complex carbohydrate involved. Both meals are warm and satisfying, and therefore comforting. Both meals are easy to make and don't have much clean up. All in all, they were tied for the win.

So I decided to make both. At the same time. And you know what? It was delicious.

Sometimes I start cooking with some wild idea in mind, and it ends up nothing like I imagined. And while it's always edible, there are times when it's just not very good.

This time, my friends, was neither of those. The spicy flavors of stuffed bell peppers married perfectly with the more subdued flavors of the cabbage rolls, with the tomato sauce topping it all off as the proverbial cherry on top. The hubster even declared that this was "good stuff". If you'd like a bigger meal, try serving this with "riced" cauliflower - or even regular white rice if you can tolerate the stuff.

Cabbage Stuffed Peppers serves 3

  • 3 bell peppers
  • 250 grams ground beef (about 1/2 a lb)
  • 3 outer leaves from a green cabbage, hard centers removed
  • 1 1/2 tbsp of Italian seasoning, divided
  • 1/2 tbsp of taco seasoning
  • 1 tbsp of tomato concentrate
  • 500 grams of tomato sauce (a medium-sized box)
  • 1/2 cup of bone broth
  1. Wash the bell peppers, then cut them in half and remove the seeds. Place them cut-side up in a baking dish and pre-bake them while you prepare the rest the meat at 180°C (350°F).
  2. Meanwhile, cut the cabbage leaves into small pieces or ribbons.
  3. In a large bowl, mix together the meat, the cabbage, 1/2 tbsp of the Italian seasoning, the taco seasoning and the tomato concentrate. If the mixture is too dry, add a bit of the tomato sauce to moisten it a bit.
  4. Remove the bell peppers from the oven and fill with the meat mixture. Return to the oven and cook for 30-40 minutes, or until the meat is cooked through.
  5. While the meat is baking, stir together the tomato sauce, the rest of the Italian seasoning and the bone broth in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Let the sauce simmer on low while the peppers are in the oven.
  6. When cooked through, serve the peppers topped with tomato sauce.

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