I have deep emotional scars from certain childhood foods. That’s totally normal right?
Like stuffed peppers! Holy crap, man, we ate so many fracking stuffed peppers growing up I’m surprised I didn’t turn green. So many! So many that they’re like engraved in my brain as homey comfort food, even though they’re typically gross 75% of the time.
I mean, as a kid they we’re ok. Most times they were homemade (which was a score). Other times they came from a box (which was a drag and my mom had to take me to the table kicking and screaming). And they were always, always green. I had no idea peppers even came in different colors until my late tweens.
Red peppers? Yellow peppers? … Orange peppers? Whoa. It blew my mind.
I don’t mind the typical green/ meat/ rice / sauce stuffed situation as much as some fancy pants folks do, but they’re not my favorite either. They’re not something I crave. They’re not something I cook.
But I want too! I mean, I want to want to. They remind me of childhood, and weeknight family dinners, and home. It’s funny how things from the past can stir up cravings.
My biggest beef with stuffed peppers is how dense and heavy and… lacking they tend to be. Also! Chewy peppers. Ew. I hate chewy peppers. And yes, I know hate is a strong word.
It’s just like there’s a flavor link that disappeared somewhere along the way with this dish, and since it’s a classic, no one ever went to look for it. The potential is there! They just need a little love and a friendly shove to be something more.
These peppers are more and then some. The peppers themselves are roasted (meaning they’re soft to the point of melting in your mouth), and they’re stuffed with chorizo, kale, and late Summer corn. They also have a gorgeous slice of provolone melted atop. So sexy!
Chorizo, Kale, & Corn Stuffed Roasted Red Peppers with Melted Provolone Cheese – Baker by Nature
4 large red or yellow bell peppers (or a mix!), cut in half and seeded
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
(1) medium onion, finely chopped
3 links of chorizo, cut into tiny pieces or crumbled (this will depend on the brand of chorizo you use)
5 ounces kale, large stems removed and thinly sliced
2 fresh ears of corn, shucked (or 1 cup frozen corn)
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
salt and pepper to taste
(1) 15.5 ounce can tomato sauce
8 slices of provolone cheese
Preheat oven to 400° (F). Cut peppers in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds. Lightly brush the peppers outside and inside with a tablespoon of olive oil and sprinkle the insides with salt and pepper. Place peppers, cut-side down, in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Bake until peppers are tender, 20 minutes. Let cool until touchable, then turn cut-side up.
Heat remaining olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and chorizo; cooking until onion is golden and chorizo is crispy, 6 to 8 minutes. Add garlic, Italian seasoning, and crushed red pepper and cook for another 30 seconds. Stir in the corn and the kale, cook for 2 -3 minutes before adding the tomato sauce. Reduce heat to medium and cook mixture, stirring frequently, until sauce has decreased by almost half and the kale is limp, about 10 – 12 minutes. Divide the filling among the pepper halves.
Add 2 tablespoons water to the baking dish. Top each pepper with a piece of provolone. Bake peppers uncovered for 10 minutes, then cover with foil and bake for an additional 15. Serve hot.