I have a problem.
I pin all sorts of new recipes on Pinterest and save blog posts to Bloglovin’ all the time, then I think about dinner and my brain goes blank.
It’s just silence.
Luckily, every once in a while something or someone breaks through with a new idea, like these Moroccan Style Quinoa Stuffed Peppers, and dinner is once again exciting.
This past weekend, that someone happened to be my sister. She was in town for a quick visit before her permanent move back to SF with her new hubby, yay!
There are, of course, a million reasons I like hanging out with her but one of them happens to be that she is a fantastic cook. And the great thing about her cooking is, that although it’s similar to mine and she’s more than willing to cook vegetarian, she tends to play around with different flavor profiles.
I get a little stuck in the Mexican/Southwestern world: cumin, chili powder, coriander. But Sarah tends to be more adventurous.
She’ll throw curry and cinnamon together, add nuts and dried fruit to dishes where it’s not expected.
It makes my taste buds happy and inspired.
So when she threw out the idea of Moroccan style quinoa stuffed peppers for her last night in town I was more than game. We made a game plan to end our run at the grocery store. We stocked up on the goods and made it back in time to make these babies while my real baby ran around at our feet.
I will preface that at first glance, it looks like this recipe has a lot of ingredients. Please don’t let this deter you from making these.
Pretty much everything except the spices is negotiable. Swap out the kale, omit the pomegranate seeds, sub the almonds for pistachios or the quinoa for millet. Heck, you don’t even need to stuff peppers, just make the filling and eat it on its own.
This dish is mildly spicy, fragrant and completely delish.
Come to think of it, Moroccan Style Quinoa Stuffed Peppers would probably also make a wonderful holiday main dish for those vegetarians in your life.
- 1 cup quinoa mixed with 2 cups water and pinch of salt
- 3 bell peppers, halved and deseeded, brushed lightly with olive oil
- 2 carrots, grated
- 1 zucchini, grated
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 cup kale, shredded
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Dash of cayenne
- ½ teaspoon white pepper
- 1 tablespoon each of ground cinnamon, garam masala and curry powder
- 5 small tomatoes, diced
- 1 can chickpeas, drained
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- 1 can water chestnuts, diced
- ¼ cup slivered almonds, optional
- ½ cup pomegranate seeds, optional
- 1 bunch parsley, chopped
- Cut peppers, deseed and place on a baking sheet. Brush peppers lightly with oil and cook in the oven at 375 for 10 minutes until they are slightly soft.
- While peppers are cooking, place quinoa in a pot with 2 cups of water and a pinch of salt. Cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes until all the water is absorbed and quinoa is fluffy.
- Shred the carrots and zucchini, dice onion.
- Heat oil over medium high heat, saute carrots, zucchini, onion and kale with salt until onion is soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Add cayenne, pepper, cinnamon, garam masala and curry powder, saute with vegetables for another minute.
- Mix in tomatoes, chickpeas, cranberries and water chestnuts to veggie mixture, reduce heat to low and cook for 2-3 minutes, until everything is well combine.
- Once veggie mixture is done, add quinoa, mixing well, turn off heat.
- Mix in almond, pomegranate seeds and parsley.
- Place quinoa/veggie mixture into peppers.
- Put peppers back in the oven and cook for 10 minutes.