Why is it that we're drawn to all things diminutive? Well, at least I am, whether it's puppies, people or peppers, like these multi-color capsicum cuties I've been enjoying lately.
One of my favorite bloggers, Marie of Proud Italian Cook, posted a piece about them a while back and since then, I've cooked with them a few times. They're really too small to eat as a main course, unless you eat lots of them, but they're delicious and lovely as a side dish.
You might be able to stuff them raw, but I roasted them first for about 15 minutes in a 425 degree oven. Then I cut off the tops and scraped out the seeds.
Beforehand, I made a batch of brown rice (leftover risotto would be great here too), let it cool, then mixed it with salt, pepper, chopped parsley and a heaping amount of grated fontina cheese. I stuffed the peppers, using a demitasse spoon, then baked them again in the oven at 350 degrees, just until the rice was warmed through and the cheese melted - about 15 minutes or so.
Drizzle with a little reduced balsamic vinegar glaze and they're irresistible morsels all by themselves.
Or try topping with a mixture of breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese before baking.
Another way to serve them is to mix them with ricotta and goat cheese, plus a lot of herbs. Again, after stuffing, put them back into the oven to warm up - about 15 minutes at 350 degrees. Drizzle with olive oil and grated herbs and enjoy. It's enough to make Peter's Pipers pass on the porridge.
Little Bitty Stuffed Peppers
1 package small red and yellow peppers
1 cup brown rice, cooked and cooled
1 cup fontina cheese
1/4 cup minced parsley
On a cookie sheet or baking pan, drizzle the peppers with some olive oil, then roast them at 425 degrees for 15 minutes.
Cook 1 cup of brown rice (or any kind you like) and let it cool.
Mix with 1 egg, 1 cup fontina cheese, salt, pepper and 1/4 cup minced parsley. Stuff the peppers with a demitasse spoon and bake at 350 degrees until heated through and the cheese is melted - about 15 minutes.
Drizzle with a reduced balsamic glaze if desired (Take about 1/2 cup supermarket balsamic vinegar, 2 T. honey and bring to a boil. Cook until thick, then let it cool.)
Mix 1/2 cup goat's cheese with 1 cup ricotta cheese, one egg, salt, pepper and a big handful of minced fresh thyme and minced parsley. Stuff the peppers, then bake at 350 degrees until the filling is hot.