Living a balanced lifestyle is a principle I try my best to adhere to. While I try to stay healthy, I can get pretty carefree in the kitchen – sometimes throwing all theories of moderation out the window!
As a former fitness trainer, I’m aware of the need to fit exercise and physical activity into my daily life. One thing’s for sure: good food is one of life’s greatest pleasures and it should not be taken for granted.
November is Diabetes Awareness Month. Whether or not you are diabetic, or you love someone who has diabetes, it’s a good time to pause and think about what you eat. In honor of this important month, I wanted to create a recipe that celebrates great, wholesome ingredients while delivering maximum taste.
We’re fortunate to live in a time where local farmer’s markets and organic ingredients are easier to access than ever before – and buzzwords like “super-foods” and “clean-eating” have become the latest in culinary diction. While I try to stay away from gastronomic fads, I’m always on the lookout for healthy dishes that don’t compromise on flavor.
These Quinoa, Mushroom, and Feta Stuffed Red Peppers are deliciously satisfying – each ingredient is a star in its own right. Serve them hot or at room temperature, they taste so good that you might even forget that they’re healthy!
Quinoa, Mushroom & Feta Stuffed Peppers
Makes 6 peppers
- 1 ¼ cups quinoa
- 6 red, yellow, or orange bell peppers, cut ½ an inch from the top, keep tops to cover the peppers later (remove seeds and ribs from the inside of the peppers)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 300 grams button mushrooms, cut into quarters
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 250 grams feta cheese
- 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
- 3 tablespoons spring onions (green and white parts), finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme (optional)
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat your oven to 210 degrees Celsius (410 Fahrenheit). Place oven rack in the lower third of your oven.
Rinse your quinoa under cold water and drain. Place quinoa in a pot and cover with 2 ½ cups of cold water and a fat pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat. Cover, reduce heat and let simmer for 13 minutes (I under-cook the quinoa slightly since it will bake in the peppers later). Remove from heat and keep covered for five minutes. Place the cooked quinoa in a large bowl and let cool.
While your quinoa is cooking, get on with the mushrooms. Heat one tablespoon of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add the mushrooms, and sauté until lightly browned. Add garlic, and sauté for another minute. Take off heat and season with salt and pepper.
To the quinoa, add the mushrooms, parsley, spring onions, and fresh thyme (if you have it). Gently fold all the ingredients together before crumbling in the feta. Add about one tablespoon of olive oil and season well with salt and pepper.
Stuff the peppers with the quinoa mixture, closing the peppers with their tops.
Pour a small amount of water (about a half-inch, or a centimeter) in an ovenproof baking dish big enough to hold all the peppers. Bake for about one hour, until the tops of the peppers are golden brown and the skin is blistering and soft.
*Some peppers are thinner or thicker than others and might require a shorter or longer baking time. Start checking at around the 45-minute mark to see if they’re done and adjust your baking time accordingly.