Hearty, healthy with intriguing medley of flavours and taste, this is a lip smacking nutritious quinoa stuffed bell peppers recipe you can make in few minutes.
I am sure there are times when we have leftover quinoa. Be it a quinoa salad or just plain that you may have made the day before.
I had about 1 cup of boiled quinoa left which was a bit too little for another meal.
So I decided to top it up or in this case stuff it in a bell pepper and voila what I got was a sweet and spicy vegetarian stuffed peppers for dinner.
Adding extra bits of proteins or vegetables to leftover whole grains such as rice, tabbouleh, millet will make the little pots of estranged food feel more complete!
This recipe is inspired by Moroccan or Mediterranean flavours.
The use of ‘Ras el Hanout’, a complex spice blend essential for many Moroccan dishes adds a ton of flavour to the underwise bland quinoa.
The ingredients you will need to make roasted stuffed peppers with quinoa are:
Fresh Ingredients :
⇒Cooked Quinoa – 1 cup
⇒Bell peppers – 4, either halved or the top cut
⇒Onion – 1 medium, finely chopped
⇒Garlic – 6 pods, minced or chopped
⇒Cherry tomatoes – cut in halves,15 – 20
⇒Feta cheese – 100 gms (optional, skip for a vegan version)
⇒Pomegranate kernels – 1/2 cup ( optional)
⇒Lemon juice – 2 tsps
⇒Coriander leaves – a handful
Seasoning and Spices:
⇒Ras el Hanout seasoning – 2 tsp
⇒Sweet or smoked paprika – 2 tsp
⇒Sesame seeds – 3 tsps
⇒Raisins and dried apricot – a handful
⇒Salt to taste
⇒Olive oil – 2 tbsp
The ingredients list may look exhaustive but apart from bell peppers, quinoa,onion, garlic, olive oil, assorted dry fruits and seasoning, you can pretty much add what you have in hand.
Boil quinoa in stock till done and keep aside .
Preheat oven to 180ºC. Smear the peppers with olive oil, salt and a generous sprinkle of Ras-el-Hanout seasoning and roast them for about 15 – 20 mins till it becomes crunchy soft.
Heat olive oil in a pan, add garlic and saute for a minute. Now add the onions and saute till it becomes translucent.Next add the cherry tomatoes and continue to saute for another 2 mins or so till the tomatoes begin to have a nice glaze.
Now add quinoa, and mix it well with the tomatoes and onion.
Next add the 2 tsp of Ras-El-Hanout, paprika, feta cheese and salt and mix in well with the quinoa.
Finally add the sesame seeds, dry fruits, pomegranate kernels, coriander leaves and lemon juice and gently give it a good mix.
Stuff the quinoa mix inside the roasted peppers and serve warm or cold as a main dish or as a side dish.
Use vegetable broth for boiling quinoa and adding more flavour.
Add regular tomatoes instead of cherry tomatoes or leave them out if you do not like soft cooked tomatoes in your meals.
You can add whole pulses such as sweet corn, black beans, kidney beans as well for a protein rich vegan quinoa with stuffed pepper option.
Substitute Ras el Hanout with roasted cumin and coriander powder or choose any from this list of Mediterranean seasoning.
Do not over bake the peppers. Cook only till it becomes slightly cooked. Soggy peppers does not not taste good when stuffed
|Cooked Quinoa – 1 cup|
|Bell peppers – 4, either halved or the top cut|
|Onion – 1 medium, finely chopped|
|Garlic – 6 pods, minced or chopped|
|Cherry tomatoes – cut in halves,15 – 20|
|Feta cheese – 100 gms (optional)|
|Ras -el-Hanout seasoning - 2 tsp|
|Sweet or smoked paprika – 2 tsp|
|Sesame seeds – 3 tsps|
|Raisins and dried apricot – a handful|
|Pomegranate kernels – 1/2 cup (optional)|
|Lemon juice – 2 tsps|
|Coriander leaves – a handful|
|Salt to taste|
|Olive oil – 2 tbsp|