It’s time to take another peek inside a local kitchen… today we’re virtually stepping into the kitchen of Laura Serico. Laura is a relatively new Baltimore mom blogger who writes about cooking, traveling with kids, home design and the art of creating after you’ve created a family. She’s sharing her Mediterranean Stuffed Peppers with Quinoa with us. I don’t know about you, but Quinoa is one of those ingredients that I’ve always wanted to try but never quite had the right recipe. Dilemma solved. This recipe made my stomach growl. Perfect weeknight dinner option. Looking forward to mixing it up next week! Many many thanks to Laura for sharing.

I am always looking for easy vegetarian main dishes to add to our dinner rotation, but the task is made more difficult by the fact that  my husband is a complete carnivore. In his mind it’s not a “real dinner” without some animal protein (or a heaping helping of pasta). We’ve reached a middle ground with one of my favorite grains- quinoa. Quinoa is  much higher in protein than couscous or rice, and feels heartier. We’ve been loving this recipe all winter… even our two year old is a fan!

 

ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium yellow onions, chopped
8 oz sliced baby bella mushrooms, roughly chopped
6 bell peppers (tops removed and reserved,  peppers cored and seeded)
1/2 cup chopped flat leaf parsley
1 bag of baby spinach
1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed and cooked according to package directions
2/3 cup of crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup of Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

directions
Cook quinoa according to package directions and set aside.


Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 to 6 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook until softened, 4 to 5 minutes more. Add parsley and spinach (in batches, if needed). Let spinach wilt then add cooked quinoa and toss gently to combine. Add feta and olives (optional) and cook 1 to 2 minutes more. Add sat and pepper to taste. Set aside to let filling cool.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9- x 13-inch baking pan with oil then set aside.


Divide quinoa mixture evenly among the bell peppers, gently packing it down and making sure to fill each pepper. Top each pepper with its reserved top and arrange peppers upright in prepared pan. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes, remove foil and bake for an additional 30 minutes or until peppers are tender and filling is heated through.


Serve with a salad of mixed greens and some crusty french bread, and prove that carnivore in your family wrong- a vegetarian main course can be hearty AND delicious.

(cool) tip: Love this recipe as much as I do? Be sure to check out Laura’s blog, Look What Mom Made, and follow her on Twitter.

photo credit: Thanks to Laura’s friend Sindhu Moon for taking photos.