To be 100% honest with you all, I actually hate Bell Peppers (or capsicum as we call it here in Australia) I don’t know why everyone seams to enjoy them, I just can’t stand them! Thing is I want to like them and I’ve tried really hard to do so, every time I taste them it just gets worse, and yes I’ve tried them raw, baked, char grilled, sautéed etc etc. I just can’t. I guess I just have to accept that I’m a capsicum hater, which is sad because they are so bright, colourful and versatile in so many dishes. Ah well, I guess you are what you are!
So, I had some bell peppers laying around in my fridge, looking sad and on their last few days. I obviously wasn’t going to eat them seeing as I hate the things, so I decided to create something quick and easy with them for my mum and dad to have when they got home from work. They loved it, I cant vouch this for myself but apparently the flavours worked really well together and it was delicious. That being said, I thought I’d share the recipe!
So, another reason why I tried to make myself like bell peppers more is because they are so good for you. See how they are so brightly coloured? That means they are loaded with antioxidants such as alpha-carotene and beta-carotene and flavonoid compounds such as luteolin and quercetin. These molecules are so important as they neutralise free radicals which can potentially be cancer causing, they also slow down ageing of cells. Bell Peppers are also packed with Vitamin C, in fact, just one cup contain 157% of your daily vitamin C requirements! They are also very high in Vitamin A, E, K and B group vitamins, as well as folate, potassium and fibre. So you can see why I tried to make myself like them!
- 5-6 Large, Multicoloured Bell Peppers
- ¾ Cup Quinoa
- 2-3 Cups Salt Reduced Vegetable Stock (Or Water)
- ½ Small Onion
- 2 Cloves of Garlic
- 1 Large Zucchini
- 300g Pumpkin
- 1 Can Mixed beans
- 1 Can Tinned Tomatoes
- 2 Tbs Tamari (Or soy sauce)
- Large handful of Basil
- 2 Tsp Dried Parsley
- ¼ Tsp Cayenne Pepper
- ¾ Tsp Cumin
- 1 Tsp Sweet Paprika
- Cook the Quinoa in vegetable stock or water according to packet instructions until light and fluffy. * Note: Quinoa to liquid ratio is 1:2
- Wash your vegetables. Cut the lids off the bell peppers and carefully scrape out the insides
- Chop garlic and onion, sauté in a saucepan with the tamari on a medium heat until translucent. Add the tinned tomatoes, basil and parsley.
- Chop the zucchini and pumpkin into small cubes and place in the pot with the tomato sauce, allow to cook until soft, but not too soft as it will be going into the oven later.
- Add Cayenne pepper, sweet paprika and cumin to the sauce mixture.
- Once Quinoa is cooked, place it in a large bowl. Drain the beans and combine with the quinoa. Add the sauce mixture and mix together.
- Place bell peppers on a large tray lined with baking paper. Fill the peppers to the top with the quinoa mixture, put the "lid" on and place in the oven on 180ºC for 30-35 minutes. Keep checking up on them however, you may need more or less time, depending on the size of your peppers.
- Remove from oven and serve! Note: If you have any left over quinoa mixture that didn't fit into the peppers, simply save it for lunch/dinner as a salad for the following day!