What The Heck Is Under That Cheese Stuffed Pepper?!
What is under that cheese today is what I call my Mexican meat loaf. Some days it is made with ground beef, other times with ground turkey, but the ingredients stay the same...
Tip: if you have never used oatmeal in your loafs, give it a try, keeps the loaf moist, bulks it up, and is healthier then bread crumbs to boot! also, always use a fork to mix up your meat loafs, keeps them lighter..
Oven 375 degrees
Time 45-50 minutes
I love peppers stuffed with rice, veggies, and all that jazz, but my fav way to stuff them is with meat or salmon loafs. Will give my salmon version at the bottom.
I prefer colored peppers over green, have gotten too many bitter ones through the years, but of course they can be used, it is your kitchen, your choice.
My basic recipe is as follows:
3 large peppers halved lengthwise and seeded, (I do not precook, some recipes call to)
1 lb. ground beef OR turkey, lean works best here
2/3 cup oatmeal (start with 2/3, if too moist can add little more to equal 3/4 cup)
2 eggs, beaten
2/3 cup salsa
2/3 cup shredded cheese
black pepper to taste
tsp dried thyme or to taste
cumin to taste, I use 1 and 1/2 teaspoons
Mix all together and stuff into peppers, then bake them 45 minutes, check to see if done by pressing on them and if firm they are done, then top with some more shredded cheese or a slice, bake 5 mins more, or till cheese is melted..Please be aware all ovens cook differently, some a little faster, some a little slower, if you know your oven, you are a better judge of times...
Note: if you have too much mixture, just toss in a pan sprayed dish or muffin tins and bake...this mixture can also be just a regular meat loaf or meat balls.
Poke a few holes in the bottom, let drain a few minutes and serve, I love these served over rice or on top of a mound of mashed potatoes.
I love salmon loaf also, and actually is my fav stuffing of all 3 of them.
I use a large can of salmon in place of pound of meat, and add 2/3 cup of finely diced pepper and onion (2/3 cup total of two mixed together) in place of the salsa and garlic powder in place of the cumin...for some reason I am not crazy over the salsa or cumin in the salmon, but that is just me...