These delicious baked bell peppers are a simple Mediterranean dish coming from the Sicilian and Ligurian regions.
I love to serve them to my guests, not only because they are so colorful, but because they get so excited anticipating what’s inside. I surprise them with different ingredients stuffed inside each time.
The aroma when they are being baked fills the kitchen especially when they are filled with ground turkey then seasoned with breadcrumbs, garlic and olive oil…but also when they are only stuffed with just rice or only with cheese.
It’s such a versatile dish and can be made for meat-eaters or vegetarians alike. Delicious and easy to make, these remind me of being at my Mama’s dinner table back home.
Authentic Italian Tip: You may think of Pepperoni as the spiced salami that goes on pizza, but Peperoni actually means bell peppers!
Peperoni al Forno con Patate
Pair with Mazzoni Barbera
4 bell peppers (red, orange or yellow, each cut in half)
1 small green bell pepper (finely diced)
1 Pound ground turkey
4 Tablespoons Pecorino Romano (grated)
3 Tablespoons breadcrumbs (heaping)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon fresh Italian parsley (finely chopped)
1 Large potato (thinly sliced using a mandoline)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 can San Marzano tomatoes (well chopped)
For the potatoes:
Slice the potato into 1/4-inch slices using a mandoline. Transfer to a large shallow pan and coat generously with olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste and bake at 400º for 20 to 25 minutes.
In a large skillet sauté olive oil and garlic for approximately 1 minute on medium-low. Add the San Marzano tomatoes, salt and pepper and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and set aside.
In a large skillet heat olive oil and add turkey. Add the finely diced green bell pepper and brown the turkey for approximately 7 minutes, stirring continuously.
Cut in half vertically the bell peppers keeping the stem, discard the seeds.
In a baking pan spoon the tomato sauce on the bottom and add the bell peppers with the hollow sides facing upward.
In a bowl mix the browned turkey, 4 tablespoons of the tomato sauce, breadcrumbs, Pecorino Romano, garlic, salt and pepper. Spoon equal amount of the mixture into each hollowed pepper.
Cover with aluminum foyer and bake for 45 minutes, remove aluminum foyer and bake for an additional 15 minutes or until the peppers are tender.
Transfer to serving plate and sprinkle the top with the remaining Pecorino Romano, garnish with the sliced potatoes.
Influenced by memories in the kitchen with his mother and grandmother, Italian-born Francesco Romano is the man behind the food blog, Coco de Mama. He shares recipes and culinary knowledge with Mazzoni fans each month.