Sorry folks, bad timing for a family emergency this past week. Back to our regularly scheduled programming!
So my great grandma used to make these things that she called “pigeons” – which sounds really gross, but really it is just a “stuffed pepper (or cabbage sometimes) gone Dutch.” As an adult, I find myself reverting to a lot of recipes I grew up on, but Kelyn-izing them to be healthier/more in line with what I like. To this end, below is my pigeon recipe. My grandma used to boil her rice in chicken broth, which gives great flavor, so this is something to try if you have it around. She also used Beef, if turkey isn’t your thing. We ate ours with a big garden salad and leftover Basil Pasta Salad (post to follow for this). Delicious!
6 large, organic, green peppers with the center stem cut out
1 pound “all natural, grass-fed, free range” ground turkey
1 organic, local carrot – diced or shredded – I shred them
1 organic, local onion – diced
2 organic, local garlic scapes diced(or you can use regular garlic)
2 cups cooked brown rice
1 cup local, organic smashed tomatoes ( I put them in a bowl and mash with a potato masher)
1/2 cup all natural, shredded, reduced fat jack or cheddar cheese
4-5 large, local sage leaves chopped
3-5 sprigs of local Thyme (depending on how long they are)
3-5 sprigs of organic, local parsley
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat your oven to 375. Brown your turkey over medium high heat with your carrots, garlic scapes, and onions in the pan. When you drain it, just be careful to not lose the veggies!
2. Add the rice, herbs and smashed tomatoes to the meat and veggies in the pan. Stir through. It is ok if it is a bit runny, it will firm up in the pepper, but mostly it should be pretty good. Salt and pepper to taste
3. For the peppers, I usually drop some oil in each, and then rub it around inside and out with a silicon brush to coat it. If you like really well-cooked peppers you can put them on a foil lined pan empty, and cook for 5-8 minutes before stuffing to soften them up. If you prefer a more crunchy texture, you can just fill them up and put them in the oven. We eat them a bit crunchy.
4. Cook for 30-35 minutes (depending on the pepper thickness) until they turn a lighter green. Pull them out, and top with a sprinkle of cheese on each. Put back in the oven for another 10 minutes.
5. Let sit for a few minutes before serving so that they cheese can set. Voila! I can feel my grandma turning over in her grave going “No beef! No lard! No way!…and you add cheese! Pshaw…”, but in this day and age, I can only hope she would understand!