I wrote all about the origin of the stuffed pepper in my Taco Turkey Stuffed Peppers post. I had never given the stuffed peppers the parmigiana treatment and it just felt. like. time. This is always a go-to recipe for me because A. it’s not particularly expensive B. it feeds a BUNCH of people and C. it is incredibly satisfying.
SHOPPING LIST: 6 cubanelle peppers, 1.5 lbs. spicy Italian sausage (chicken or pork), 14 oz. whipped cream cheese, 1 egg, tomato sauce, shredded mozzarella, chopped garlic, dried oregano, olive oil, garlic salt, pepper
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. The first step is trimming the stems off of your peppers, slicing them open (without going all the way through) just enough that you can get your fingers inside to clean out all the seeds. Once your peppers are cleaned, rub them with olive oil and season them thoroughly with garlic salt and pepper.
In a bowl, mix one egg. Add 1 tB. of chopped garlic. Add your spicy Italian sausage – if you purchased sausage IN the casing, make sure to squeeze the sausage OUT of the casing so you basically have ground, seasoned meat. 1.5 lbs. of sausage would be equivalent to about 8 links. I also want to note here that the use of sausage is key here because the addition of fat and seasoning to the ground meat is what naturally gives this dish a crazy amount of flavor with minimal effort. Finally, add the whipped cream cheese and use a wooden spoon to mix well. Stuff each pepper TO THE MAX with your filling. Place all of the stuffed peppers in your baking dish. Top with tomato sauce of your choice – in this particular instance I used a Far Diavolo – and then top with 1 cup of shredded mozzarella and a sprinkle of oregano.
Bake your peppers for 45-50 minutes or until the peppers are fork tender and the filling is solid and cooked through! I have to tell you guys, this dish is EXTREMELY satisfying – probably one of my favorites – and as you can see from the this version VS. the taco variation I first posted, you can really use your imagination with HOW creative you get with your filling. With summer upon us, I am thinking next maybe I’ll try to make “crab cake” stuffed peppers because I’m on a serious shellfish kick over here. Or maybe on second thought I’ll just make crab cakes.