So these little poppers were inspired by a recent conversation with my mama. Over the holidays she made my great grandmother's recipe for stuffed cherry peppers. I had never heard of this recipe before but was intrigued. My great-grandmother was born in Italy and she raised 13 children. She had a beautiful kitchen garden, raised animals, and made everything including all of her pantry items from scratch. Women like her are superheroes to me. Hardworking family matriarchs... in a word, goals.
Speaking of goals, I've set myself one intention for 2016, my goal word is //s i m p l i f y//. Hoping to weave this intention into all aspects of my life and business. As they say, less is more. Looking forward to how life unfolds for us this year and wish you all blessings on each of your own journeys. Happy New Year friends!
This recipe is not really anything like my great-grandmother's. First off I used hot cherry peppers, not sweet, but you can use either variety. The hot variety is not so hot though, milder in my opinion. The stuffing is made from tofu, spiced sautéed veggies, and capers. It's a simple combo and it works really well. These peppers are pretty much bite-sized and make excellent party food and hors d'oeuvres. Good for an NYE fête, for sure, and will satisfy herbivores, gluten-free folks, and omnivores alike.
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Stuffed Hot Red Cherry Peppers
- 12 whole hot red cherry peppers
- ½ cup extra firm tofu-pressed if store bought
- ½ sweet onion
- 1 medium carrot
- 1 stalk of celery
- 1 clove of garlic
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon ground coriander seed
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons capers
- sea salt to taste
- fresh ground black pepper to taste scallion + fresh cilantro + more capers + lemon wedges to garnish
- Preheat oven to 425˚F.
- Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Cut tops off of pepper and scoop out pith and seeds with a spoon. Lightly salt inside of peppers. Chop onion, carrot and celery. Heat skillet on medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to hot skillet and sauté veggies. Peel and mince garlic and add to skillet. Add spices and a pinch of salt/pepper and sauté everything until tender and lightly browned. Remove from heat.
- In a food processor, process tofu, lemon juice and sautéed veggies until smooth. Stir capers into filling. Scoop heaping tablespoons of filling into peppers. Place stuffed peppers on baking sheet and drizzle tops with olive oil.
- Bake at 425˚F for 30-40 minutes until filling is browned and peppers are soft. If you want, you can gently remove the pepper skins, they should peel away easily after being baked.
- Garnish with fresh cilantro and sliced scallion. Enjoy!