Stuffed Bell Peppers

 

Until my twenties, Pepper and I were far, far, far from being fast friends.


I regarded crisp, circled green vegetables with disdain whenever they appeared on pizza or veggie plates, and as a kid I would turn my nose up at them and plan to throw every bite into a napkin when my mother served them for dinner.

But just like driving a car on a Sunday afternoon, reading novels with long words you finally understand but now need readers to see, and taking hot baths (give me a tub any night of the week!), the food you hated as a kid suddenly becomes not. so. bad. as an adult. And sometimes really, really good.


And whenever I can serve a meal in its own container, it's bonus time. Enter, stuffed chili.


Ingredients:


6 medium green peppers

1 pound ground beef

1 onion, chopped

1 (6 7/8 oz) can rice and roni mixture, Spanish flavor

1 (16 oz) can tomato sauce

1 teaspoon sugar

1 (14 1/2 oz.) can tomatoes (for use in preparing the rice)

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese or 1 cup American cheese




INSTRUCTIONS :


Remove the top and seeds from the peppers; boil the peppers for 5 minutes and drain. Place peppers in a baking dish. Combine ground beef and onion and cook together until tender. Drain and set aside.


Prepare the rice-a-roni according to package directions. When the rice is ready, combine it with the beef and onions. Fill the peppers with the rice mixture.

Mix the 1 teaspoons sugar with the tomato sauce and pour this AROUND the peppers (not over).

Cover the baking dish. Bake at 350°F for 35 minutes and then uncover and top with the shredded cheese. Bake uncovered for about 5 minutes more to melt the cheese. Serve with the tomato sauce.


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