We’re still riding this heatwave and the air is filled with smoke – forest fires. I can only hope that everything that needs to escape, will. When it’s THIS hot out, it makes cooking with heat quite interesting. Not only am I downing the water like a tank, but my stove/oven are cooking even hotter than usual. I made macaroon-ish cookies over the weekend (recipe coming soon), and I had to watch them like a hawk as they cooked SO much faster than usual. Oy. SO…these stunning Holland Striped Bell Peppers I actually received as a ‘gift’. The first thought I had was – I want to keep them as ‘natural’ as possible. Raw. I decided to stuff them with couscous, an array of fresh herbs, and simply dressed. This one is so EASY and fresh, you may find yourself doing some hoarding, or making a double batch! Keep cool my friends.
*Red Bell Peppers have a significantly higher amount of beta-carotene & vitamin C to that of a Green Bell Pepper. I’m a HUGE fan of Red Bell Peppers.
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 large garlic clove
- 1-1&1/2 tsp pure maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp sea salt, or to taste
- 1/4 tsp pepper, or to taste
- 1 cup dry golden couscous *quick cooking
- 1&1/4 cup water
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 4 bell peppers
- 3 tbsp fresh chives, finely chopped
- 8 med./large fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
- 1 cup fresh curly parsley, finely chopped
- 10 fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
- 1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled *optional
- sea salt + pepper
Add the lemon juice, sea salt, and pepper to a small bowl or container. Use a hand held blender and while blending, slowly pour in the olive oil. Continue blending until the oil is all added & the dressing is thick. Store in an airtight container in the fridge until ready to use.
In a pot over med. heat, bring the water to a boil. Add the couscous, salt, & oil. Stir. Turn off the heat and place the lid on - it doesn't take much for couscous to cook. Allow it to sit for 5mins. Remove the lid and give the couscous a good stir. Place the cooked couscous into a bowl and refrigerate for at least an hour to cool.
Wash and core the bell peppers. Use a small sharp knife to cut around the top of the pepper creating a 'lid'. Remove all the seeds and some of the white fibrous part of the fruit's interior.
Remove the bowl of couscous from the fridge and add the finely chopped chives, basil, parsley, mint, tomatoes, and feta cheese. Pour on the preferred amount of prepared dressing. Gently toss to coat. Add sea salt and pepper to taste.
Add the couscous mixture to each hollowed out pepper. Lightly pack in the couscous filling. Ready to serve or refrigerate for later. Good for up to 3days.
~ I like to use Bob's Red Mill quick cooking Golden Couscous for this recipe.