Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Greek Orzo Stuffed Peppers

This is a light and healthy recipe to kick off your new year. We really enjoyed these stuffed bell peppers and to my surprise they were filling too. This recipe serves 4 or 2 with lots of left overs!
Adapted from Eating Well
4 yellow, orange and/or red bell peppers
1/2 cup whole wheat orzo
1-15 ounce can chickpeas, drained
1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
6 ounces of baby spinach, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon of chopped fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried oregano
3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese, divided (I prefer the light version)
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes (not oil-packed), chopped
1 tablespoon of red-wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon of salt
Halve the peppers lengthwise through the stems, leaving the stems attached. Remove the seeds and white membrane.
Place the peppers in a large microwaveable dish. Add 1/2 inch of water, cover with a paper towel and microwave on High for 7-9 minutes, until the peppers are softened. Let them cool slightly, drain and set aside.
Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Add orzo and cook until just tender, 8-10 minutes or according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water.
Drain and rinse chickpeas. Pour the chickpeas back into the can and mash them with a fork into a chunky paste, leaving some of the chickpeas whole.
Heat olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft for about 5 minutes. Add spinach and oregano and cook until the spinach is wilted, about 1 minute.
Stir in the orzo, chickpeas, 1/2 cup feta, tomatoes, vinegar and salt;  cook until heated through, about 1 minute.
Divide the filling among the pepper halves and sprinkle each with some of the remaining 1/4 cup of feta cheese.
You can serve the peppers with a garden salad or sliced pita bread!
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