Stuffed Bell Peppers with Quinoa & Chicken and some childhood memories

Bell Pepper is one gorgeous vegetable, I can’t keep myself from adding to the shopping cart every week. Their glossy skins and vibrant hues instantly jazz up any ordinary looking dish.Beauty of bell peppers is not just skin deep as they are a store house of vitamins and anti-oxidants.They are known to improve eye health, reduce risk of anemia and several chronic diseases.

There is an old gardener’s tale about identifying the gender of the pepper by flipping them over and checking the bumps at the bottom. The pepper with 3 bumps is supposed to be male,is tall,thin has fewer seeds and is less sweet. The bell pepper with 4 bumps is round,full of seeds,sweeter and considered to be female. Though this theory is unfounded and a myth, assigning a gender helps in choosing the right peppers. The so called female kind are ideal for salads,sandwiches and stuffing. Whereas the other ones hold better in heat and are ideal for grilling and cooking.Red bell peppers are sweeter than the yellow ones,which are in turn sweeter than their green counterparts.

For this recipe, I chose the plump 4 segment yellow and red peppers because they are convenient for stuffing and they don’t tumble during their time in the oven.I also experimented with green peppers. Every one in the family had their own favorites.Talking of stuffing….the quinoa,chicken and corn make this dish one  healthy,delicious,flavorful and complete meal in itself.

Stuffed Bell peppers

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

A fresh, light bell pepper recipe ideal for a late summer dinner.

Ingredients

  • 4 round bell peppers (yellow/red)
  • 200 g boneless chicken cubelets OR leftover chicken shredded
  • 1 cup quinoa (washed and soaked in water for 2 hours)
  • 1/2 cup sweet corn kernels+ 1 tbsp. extra for garnish
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1/2 tomato chopped
  • 1 chicken stock cube
  • 2-4 tbsp. grated cheese of your choice
  • red chili flakes for sprinkling on top
  • dried Italian herb seasoning
  • salt
  • 1/2 tsp.red chili powder or paprika
  • 1 tsp. ginger garlic paste
  • 2 tsp. vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. tandoori chicken masala(optional)
  • 2 tbsp. oil

Method:

  1. Marinate the chicken cubelets in salt,red chili powder,ginger garlic paste,vinegar,tandoori chicken masala for 30 minutes. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a pan and saute the marinated chicken till cooked. It should take about 5 minutes. Alternatively, shred some leftover roast chicken and keep aside.
  2. Dissolve a chicken stock cube in 2 cups water.Heat the broth and add the rinsed quinoa seeds.Roasting the seeds makes them more flavorful.When the liquid is boiling, add onion, tomato, corn, salt, and leave to simmer.When white ring like sprouts appear, you know it’s done. It should have soaked up the water by now. Take off heat.
  3. Add the cooked chicken and mix lightly.
  4. Wash the bell peppers and pat them dry. Cut a thin slice from the stem end of each bell pepper to remove top of pepper. Retain the tops.Remove seeds and membranes. If necessary, cut a thin slice from bottom of each pepper so they stand up straight. Rub them with some oil all over.
  5. Spoon in the stuffing. Sprinkle corn, cheese,chili flakes and mixed herb seasoning.
  6. Cover them with their tops and press gently.
  7. Place these peppers on a baking tray which has been sprayed with some oil.Cover loosely with an aluminium foil.
  8. Preheat the oven at 375º F.
  9. Place the baking tray in the oven and Bake until the peppers are softened and the cheese has melted, about 20-25 minutes.
  10. Serve warm. Enjoy.

a family of happy bell peppers (my daughter thinks they wear an evil smirk though ) Well! Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder ❤

                             Childhood Memories

Sweet Papri pushcart. The vendor wanted me to post his picture too.

Pushcarts have been a ubiquitous part of street vending in India.From vegetables,fruits,ice creams,flowers,snacks to kitchen knickknacks you could find these street vendors pushing their simple carts in the lanes and by lanes of cities and towns fulfilling different household needs. These hawkers have their unique individual style of street cries or chants to attract the customers’ attention.

One particular childhood memory is the Sweet Papri pushcart. These papri vendors always had an old school bell which went ♩🔔 ting ding ding🔔  to attract the kids of the locality. Papri is a fine thread like sweet made painstakingly with flour,ghee and sugar. It was sold in big cylindrical glass jars with an opening on top. The hawkers used to make paper cones from old magazines and stuff these fine strands of delicious candy in them and hand them over to their customers,usually kids who fondly referred to it as ‘old man’s beard’. I was very fond of this sweet too,all my childhood. As I grew up, these papri pushcarts came along less often. And eventually they disappeared.

Recently on one of my evening walks, I heard the familiar sound of the bell ♩🔔 ting ♩ding ding🔔 ♩ coming from a distance. I followed the sound along the by lanes to find my long lost childhood craving..sweet papri. Nothing had changed( of course except the vendor). The pushcart,the bell,the taste of papri, the paper cones everything was same. The glass jars were however replaced with plastic jars. Nevertheless it brought back all my sweet childhood memories.

I am sure you all have your own childhood cravings.Don’t you?

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45 Comments Add yours

  1. andy1076 says:

    It’s so cute keeping the top there 😄

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Yeah! Hats off to the super veggie😀

      Liked by 2 people

      1. andy1076 says:

        Ya! 😊😊

        Like

  2. They say you first eat with your eyes… and yellow is the most happy color (to me). So this looks like happy delicious food! Hugs.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. skd says:

      I agree with you completely dear Teagan👍🏻😊 Yellow is a bright sunny cheerful colour. It’s my favorite. And full of life. On a platter I would first pick the yellow food instinctively.
      Hugs and Regards💖

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely recipe and so many interesting facts about peppers – I’ll now be checking out their ‘bottom’ every time I buy one!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Haha! It really helps Laura. Thanks for liking the post😊💖

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Ana, love stuffed peppers too! Very fun childhood story-I enjoyed reading it. x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Hey Cheryl😊 Bell peppers are fun to use. We can keep experimenting with the stuffing. Thanks for stopping by dear 💖

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My pleasure Ana always good to see you blogging! x

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Onisha Ellis says:

    Which color of pepper held up the best? I think it is sweet that you came across another sweets vendor.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      All the three held up though the green ones cooked faster. The yellow and red ones were more firm. I like them crisp so I took them out when the green peppers turned soft. We can cook them longer if we like them softer. Thank you so much for stopping by Onisha 😊💐

      Like

    1. skd says:

      Yayyyyy😊

      Like

  6. These look so scrumptious, love it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Thank you dear Marsay💖

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Christy B says:

    Oh goodness that dish looks yummy. I once had a similar one made for me on a date and was quite impressed with the cook 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Haha! I think I need to tweak the title a bit😉😀

      Like

    1. skd says:

      Thank you😊

      Liked by 1 person

  8. How pretty! I don’t know why but all I have ever made are stuffed green peppers! I don’t know why I never thought of stuffing yellow or red.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      They are pretty looking on the table. Though they need more cooking time than the green ones. Thank you so much for stopping by. Please do keep visiting😊💐

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Linda says:

    The stuffed peppers look yummy – and what a cool little background story about male and female peppers!! Who knew!? Thanks for sharing this great recipe! 😋

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Thank you so much Linda 💖

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Loretta says:

    Such great flavors in this stuff bell pepper Ana. Like you, I absolutely love them too. It was quite interesting to have read how to tell the male vs. the female, not sure I ever knew that :). I’ll be it all made a great meal. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Thank you Loretta. I made it again this week and I kept them a little longer in the oven along with some spatchcocked chicken (peri peri recipe)and charred them a little bit under the broiler. The juices from the chicken added more flavor to the dish and it was a win win meal.

      Like

  11. Antonia says:

    I adore stuffed peppers, and I love this unique and delicious twist. I can’t wait to give it a try!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Please do try it Antonia. I am sure you will love it.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. loshame says:

    I like your post 😊.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Thank you so much for stopping by and for the kind feedback.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. loshame says:

        Take a look on my last post and follow me if you like it 😀.

        Like

  13. Now I love yellow more than ever. This is a delightful and delicious post. Hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Thank you dear Teagan. That’s such a nice thing to say. Lots of hugs from my end as well😊💕

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Tuan Tran says:

    So cute! little food in paprika, wonderful if eating now :))).. Nice food and pro chef, thank for your recipe..:*

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Thank you so much for stopping by 😊👍🏻

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Dina says:

    This looks so yummy!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Thank you so much Dina😊👍🏻

      Like

  16. Thank you for sharing those memories, and the delish recipes!

    Like

    1. skd says:

      Thanks a lot dear Nell💖

      Like

  17. Sumith says:

    First of all you jogged me through some nice child good memories. I love pepper of any kind, loved the beautiful stuffing. The male and the female peppers sounds very interesting. I would like to try this next time. Beautiful share Ana.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. skd says:

      Thank you so much. I am so glad this post made you nostalgic. Sweet memories from the carefree and innocent days. Now food has become exotic but it still can’t measure up to the humble dishes we relished in our childhood. Please do try this pepper dish. I would love to see how you plate it up.

      Like

      1. Sumith says:

        Thank you Ana for this beautiful lost. Those days were Amazing! Will defenetly give this a try. Am am bit away from blogging for a while for some reasons. Looking forward to more of your amazing posts.

        Liked by 1 person

  18. Alex Olander says:

    You’re pro chef, not only delicious but also so beautiful! Thanks for your recipe 🙂

    Like

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