Fresh stuffed red pepper shells with pearl couscous, forbidden rice, kamut or red quinoa

August 29, 2010
4 Ratings
  • Serves 4 or even 8 (with half portions)
Author Notes

I love making salads as appetizers. This is an easy dish to prepare. Half the fun is cutting the red peppers to house the filling. You can see a few variations in my cutting technique. This is really easy to prepare. Select the most plump, beautiful red peppers that can stand on their own. Test them! If they are not stable, then you can even off the bottom to make them stand up straight, but many will already have this stability. Fill these with a salad you make from the healthiest grains you may have leftover from the week. You can add whatever you like to make the filling scrumptious. I am suggesting a few fillings and a dressing, but you can vary this as you like. - Sagegreen —Sagegreen

Test Kitchen Notes

Don't let the number of ingredients daunt you. This comes together in a flash, and makes a wonderfully nutritious, yummy luncheon or side dish. Would be great for a picnic too. I would love to open my Tupperware and find this waiting for me at lunchtime! Complex flavor profile: sweet from raisins and jelly, smoky from cumin and paprika, sour from vinegar and mustard, bright from fresh herbs, tangy from the feta, and a nice background heat if you use a pepper jelly -- I used a jalapeno jelly. And textures! So much crunch from the pepper and nuts. You could keep the vinaigrette the same and add or subtract so many other herbs and veg for different flavor profiles. This is a wonderfully flexible dish and would make any Meatless Monday a hit. - Burnt Offerings —Burnt Offerings

What You'll Need
  • 4 sweet select red peppers
  • 2-3 cups whole grains, soaked and then cooked accordingly, such as forbidden rice, pearl couscous, kamut, or red quinoa
  • 2 teaspoons cumin, optional
  • 1/4 teaspoon tumeric, optional
  • 1 cup feta or similar cheese
  • 1 ounce toasted pinion pine nuts, almonds, or pecans
  • 4 tablespoons fresh chopped mixed herbs, such as mint, basil, parsley and cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon pink or kosher salt
  • 1-2 tablespoons chopped scallions
  • 1-2 tablespoons dried currants, yellow raisins or cranberries, optional
  • 2 tablespoons grated carrot and fresh ginger
  • 4 tablespoons EVOO
  • juice of a fresh lemon or lime
  • 1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon sweet or hot pepper jelly, or honey
  • salt, paprika and pepper to taste
  • paprika for garnish
  • fresh herbs for garnish
  1. Cut the tops of the peppers and take out all the seeds as well as the white fleshy interior bits. Cut triangles out of the top of the pepper saving the cuts for use in the filling. (You can bisect or even trisect the remaining triangle border of the pepper shell for effect if desired. This can also make eating easier with these pre-cuts).
  2. Mix your cooked grains of choice with feta and whatever other fillings and seasonings you want to include in a bowl. Be sure to add the leftover red pepper triangles diced further into the filling. I have used tumeric and cumin with the pearl couscous in one version, but not in the forbidden rice version.
  3. Mix the oil, juice, mustard, jelly or honey, vinegar with salt, paprika, and pepper to taste for the dressing. Pour this over the grain salad filling and lightly toss. Adjust the seasoning if needed.
  4. Fill each cut pepper with the grain filling. Garnish with fresh herbs and paprika. You can serve whole or even consider slicing these in half, as pictured in one variation.
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1 Review

Cheri M. June 27, 2015
Look scummy, but surely these could cooked also, even popped on bbq wrapped of course!