Monday, October 31, 2011

Spooktacular: The Whole She-bang

For the last post concerning the spooktacular, I'm giving you a tour of all the decorations put in place.  Here's how it's set up:

The lovely bats I made from here. I just traced the template straight off the computer screen and cut to my little heart's desire.

The witches curtain I got from Martha Stewart.  Mine obviously is not quite as good; foiled by Martha yet again!

Of course the ghosts I showed you all earlier.
And now, for some horrible photography...

I'd like to tell you that I had tons of trick-or-treaters knocking at my door and I only had  a second to snap a picture, but that would be lying.

So I was busy...
The peppers took longer than I expected...
and the sun went down...
and Kora was being obnoxious...
and pigs were flying...

Okay, I'm out of excuses.  Anyhow, you can't win them all right?  Right. So I give you sub-par food photography due to our lighting.  On to the recipe!

Jack-o-lantern Stuffed Peppers
Adapted from Kalyn's kitchen
*These were seriously delicious.  I would have these anytime of day if I could!

4 peppers (I used orange in celebration of Halloween, but green are considerably cheaper)
1 medium yellow onion
2 t olive oil
2 cloves of garlic
1 cup brown rice, cooked
1/2 lb. of sausage (Italian, breakfast, turkey all are great choices!)
1/2 t oregano
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 cup shredded cheese

Cook rice according to package directions, or using a rice cooker. 

Preheat oven to 375F. Trim bottom of bell peppers so they have a flat surface to stand on. Cut off a fairly generous amount of the stem end of peppers, then remove seeds. If so desired, cut jack-o-lantern faces into side of peppers to add a festive flare! Place hollowed-out peppers in a baking dish that you've sprayed with non-stick spray or olive oil. 

Remove stem part from the pepper caps and trim off any white membrane, then dice pepper caps and the onion into fairly small dice. Heat 2 tsp. olive oil in a large skillet, then saute diced pepper, garlic, and onion for 3-4 minutes, until they are starting to soften but aren't browned. Remove pepper-onion mixture to a bowl, add 1 tsp. more olive oil, then cook sausage until it's cooked through.

Put the onion-pepper-garlic mixture back into the pan with the sausage, add the oregano, and saute 2-3 minutes to blend the flavors. Then add cooked rice and Parmesan cheese, season the mixture with salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste, and cook just long enough to warm, about 1-2 minutes.

Stuff the filling mixture into the hollowed-out peppers, using a spoon to press the mixture down so it's tightly packed into the pepper shell. Bake peppers for 30 minutes, then remove from oven and put a generous pinch of grated cheese on top of each pepper. Put peppers back into the oven and bake about 5 minutes more, until cheese is melted and lightly browned. Serve hot.

Devour with delight! 

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