Field Notes

Stuffed Peppers from Root to Leaf

We’ll admit it. We’re cookbook hoarders. We love everything about them, from the gorgeous photos to the delicious recipes.

Our current cookbook crush is a real beauty: Root to Leaf, by Steven Satterfield, chef of Miller Union in Atlanta. Over the course of nearly 500 pages, chef Satterfield drops serious knowledge on his favorite fruits and vegetables. Naturally, we were extra excited about the peppers section.

In addition to an easy hot sauce recipe and a brilliant recipe for romesco sauce that uses fresh peanuts in place of traditional almonds, we were especially taken by a vegetarian recipe for stuffed peppers. These healthy, hearty treasure chests are stuffed with quinoa, tomatoes, herbs and feta. Satterfield was kind enough to share the recipe with us, and it’s quickly becoming our favorite weekday dinner.

ROASTED STUFFED PEPPERS

Recipe from Root to Leaf by Steven Satterfield (Harper Wave)

The bitter grassy flavor of unripe green bell peppers is perfect in the Cajun or Creole mirepoix called “holy trinity,” which also includes onion and celery. For the main ingredient, however, I lean toward ripe sweet peppers. If you can get a variety of colors, it makes for a beautiful presentation. I’ve replaced the tradi­tional ground beef filling with whole grains, feta, and cherry tomatoes. Because these are halved and cooked open-face, it’s important to keep them covered and baste a few times so that the filling does not dry out.

8 servings

  • 3 cups cooked grain (farro, quinoa, or bulgur wheat)
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 quart vegetable stock
  • 4 large evenly shaped ripe bell peppers, cut in half lengthwise, stem on, membrane and seeds removed
  • ¼ cup goat’s milk feta
  • 1 tablespoon each chopped fresh parsley and basil

Preheat the oven to 400°F. In a large bowl, combine the cooked grain, toma­toes, and olive oil. Add enough vegetable stock to make a very moist mixture. Fill the pepper halves and place in a baking dish large enough to hold them snugly. Drizzle with olive oil. Pour about ¼ inch of vegetable stock into the dish. Cover with parchment paper and tightly seal with aluminum foil. Bake until the peppers are tender, about 1 hour. Every 15 minutes during baking, remove the covering, baste the peppers with the pan juices, and re-cover.

When the peppers are tender, remove the cover. Sprinkle each pepper with a little crumbled feta and another drizzle of olive oil. Return to the oven to lightly brown the feta, 5 to 10 minutes. To serve, baste the peppers a final time with the cooking liquid. Transfer to plates and garnish with the chopped herbs.

Reprinted with permission from Root to Leaf, by Steven Satterfield, copyright © 2015, published by Harper Wave, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.