Friday, February 5, 2016

Stuffed Indian Peppers

STUFFED PEPPERS 3 WAYS
Potato stuffed
Paneer (Indian cottage cheese) stuffed
Besan (chickpea flour) stuffed




Stuffed peppers are a fave all over the world. A variety of fillings find their way into these beauties both vegetarian and meat fillings. Flavored with cheese, tomato and spices you can fill them with almost anything - beans, rice, ground chicken, quinoa or a combination of these; they all taste awesome.
In India stuffed peppers are always made as a side dish to be accompanied by roti or naan. The fillings vary based on regional preferences - so do the spices. I am sharing three most common vegetarian fillings. Two are vegan as well and the third can be made vegan by substituting paneer with tofu. 

Stuffed peppers
Ingredients:
Large green peppers
Stuffing of your choice (see three options below)
Salt
Olive Oil
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (Gas Mark 4/180°C).
  2. Cut a thin slice off the top of each pepper. Remove the center core and seeds.
  3. Sprinkle a little salt on the inside of the peppers.
  4. Spray each pepper on the outside with the olive oil and then stand the peppers upright in an ovenproof dish.
  5. Prepare the stuffing using any one of the recipes given below.
  6. Spoon the stuffing into the prepared pepper.
  7. Bake for 30-40 minutes until the peppers are tender and lightly charred at the edges. Serve hot.
Potato stuffing
Ingredients: (For 1 pepper)
1 large potato, boiled & mashed
1/4 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 medium red onion, chopped fine
1/2 tsp minced ginger
1-2 green chilies, chopped fine
1/5 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp coriander powder
Red chili powder to taste(optional)
1/4 tsp mango powder (amchoor)
Salt to taste
1 tsp oil
  1. Heat oil in a pan and add the mustard and cumin seeds. Let these roast and crackle for a few seconds.
  2. Add the chopped onion and ginger and saute till onion turns pink. 
  3. Add the roughly mashed potato along with all the other spices and mix well to incorporate the spices evenly, for about 1-2 minutes on medium. 
  4. Remove from heat and cool. 
  5. As a variation you can add a handful of steamed peas along with the potato to create a more samosa like flavor.

Besan (chickpea flour) stuffing
Ingredients: (For 1 pepper)
1/4 cup chickpea flour
Pinch asafoetida (hing)
1/4 tsp fennel seeds
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
1/5 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp coriander powder
Red chili powder to taste(optional)
1/4 tsp mango powder (amchoor)
Salt to taste
1 tsp oil
  1. Heat oil in a pan and add the hing, fennel and cumin seeds. Let these roast and crackle for a few seconds.
  2. Add the besan and dry roast on medium heat till it turns slightly brown and imparts a cooked aroma. 
  3. Remove from heat and add all the other spices. Mix well to incorporate the spices evenly.
  4. Return to heat and add a little warm water (while stirring to avoid any lumps) to form a thick paste (soft dough). 
  5. Remove from heat and cool. 

Paneer (Indian cottage cheese) stuffing
Ingredients: (For 1 pepper)
1/2 cup grated paneer
1/4 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp kasoori methi (dry fenugreek)
1/2 medium red onion, chopped fine
1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
1-2 green chilies, chopped fine
1/5 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp coriander powder
Red chili powder to taste(optional)
Salt to taste
1 tsp oil
  1. Heat oil in a pan and add the cumin seeds. Let these roast and crackle for a few seconds.
  2. Add the chopped onion and ginger garlic paste and saute till onion turns pink. Add palm crushed kasoori methi and saute for 10 seconds. 
  3. Add the grated paneer along with all the other spices and mix well to incorporate the spices evenly, for about a minute on medium heat. 
  4. Remove from heat and cool. 
  5. As a variation you can add a handful of steamed peas along with the paneer.
  6. Substitute paneer with tofu for a vegan option.