Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Finally, fall! {Warm & Cozy Vegetarian Samosa Stuffed Peppers}

Although Alex and I love the summer months - the hot, sunny weather, the blue skies, the lazy, popsicle filled days - we spent much of the month of August dreaming of fall.

The dreams of cool mornings, knitted scarves, warm sweaters, riding boots, warm spiced latt├ęs, and cozy comfort foods that filled our heads, are finally coming true these past few days. The leaves are turning a burnt orange, a vibrant red or a golden yellow. Walking to work in the morning you can see your breathe in the crisp air and feel the crunch of leaves under your feet. You have those warm, fuzzy thoughts of cuddling up with someone special under a blanket.

Finally, fall!

To celebrate the start of this time of year, I was very excited to do some comfort cooking. My recipes are often cooked up, due to necessity or what is in my fridge or pantry at the time.This recipe is no exception. I was inspired by Indian spices that just seem to scream fall, with their warmth and intense colours and flavours.

This recipe is vegetarian and is relatively easy, and will definitely warm you up on those cool fall evenings.

Vegetarian Samosa Stuffed Peppers

















*This recipe makes 6 portions (or three peppers, halved)

Filling:

4 medium potatoes, boiled and diced
1/2 cup red pepper, finely diced
1 large onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup frozen or fresh green peas
2 tablespoons madras curry powder (fresh ground if possible)
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon cumin
1 teaspoon ground fennel
1/2 cup water
1 cup homemade tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes
Salt and pepper to taste

Peppers:

3 medium sized peppers
1 1/2 cups homemade tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes
1 tablespoon madras curry power
Halloumi or mozzarella cheese (optional)

Method:

In a large skillet, heat a tablespoon of olive oil and add the finely diced onion. Cook the onion until there is some caramel and golden colour. Add in the finely diced red pepper and cook until soft. Add in the garlic and the madras curry powder, paprika, cumin and fennel. Toast the spices in the pan for a minute or so - the smell of spices should waft through the air. Add in the cooked potatoes and peas and mix well with the onion, pepper, spice mixture. Add the water and tomato sauce, and salt and pepper to your taste. Cook, covered over a low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, mashing the potatoes and peas together slightly, until it becomes a coherent mixture.

Preheat your oven to 375°C. Halve and clean the three medium peppers and set aside. I used green and red peppers for this recipe, I can't decide which I like better as both were delicious, but use your preferred colour of pepper. Mix the tomato sauce and madras curry powder in a bowl and set aside as well.  Prepare a deep dish baking pan, by lining it with tin foil (for easy clean up). Grate the cheese and set aside (optional).

To assemble the stuffed peppers, inside each of the pepper halves, add a tablespoon or so of the spiced tomato sauce. Scoop a heaping spoon of the potato and pea (samosa filling) mixture into each of the stuffed peppers. In the baking dish, place a thin layer of tomato sauce. Place each of the filled stuffed peppers into the tray. Top the peppers with the remaining tomato sauce. Then top the stuffed peppers with cheese of your choice. Salty halloumi or mozzarella is best; this is an optional addition.

Bake in the over for 1 hour, or until the peppers are soft and the warm spicy smell envelops your kitchen. These can be eaten straight out of the oven or you can let them cool and pack them in airtight containers for weeknight dinners. They can also be put in the freezer and reheated at a later date.



Welcome fall into your kitchen with this warm and cozy recipe!

Enjoy!

-Turnip (Tina)

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