As summer sadly comes to an end, we are also facing the end of our vegetable farm-share. After a full summer of delicious recipes inspired by the fresh vegetables from the local farm, there are many that I must share. My favorite creation this summer was by far the Cheesy Chicken Chorizo and Potato Stuffed Peppers. This recipe developed from an overabundance of both peppers and potatoes. Beautiful, dark green bell peppers were just sitting in the fridge drawer with no purpose until I hit a chicken sausage sale at Whole Foods. I like to stock up on a variety of chicken sausages. I find that one large link is the perfect portion for my husband and I to have for a dinner with veggies and rice or pasta. Examining the contents of my fridge and freezer, I eyed up the chicken chorizo I had bought along with the peppers and thought this combination could be a match made in heaven. With the surplus of Yukon gold potatoes and red potatoes, I added those in the mix.
The recipe was very organic, meaning completely unplanned (as well as the other kind of organic). Not knowing exactly how to incorporate the potatoes, I began with dicing one large Yukon gold into small chunks and then boiling the diced potato pieces for just a couple of minutes. After caramelizing Vidalia onion slices, I added the chicken chorizo to the saute pan. I decided to throw the diced potatoes in the pan as well. As the onions, chorizo and potatoes cooked together, a hash formed, which turned out to be the perfect consistency for a stuffing. With a punch from some chili powder, cumin and cilantro and the satisfying creaminess of cheddar cheese, this hash was stuffed into each bell pepper.
1 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
Dash crushed red pepper
1/2 Vidalia onion, diced
Freshly ground black pepper
1 garlic clove, grated
1 link Chorizo sausage-chicken or pork, removed from casing (Half link per person)
1 large Yukon gold potato, diced
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
Juice of half of a lime
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 large green bell pepper, cut in half and seeded (Half large bell pepper per person)
1. On a preheated grill, place the bell pepper halves face up in a glass or metal baking dish. Place dish in center of grill not directly over an open flame. Cook in closed grill for 10-15 minutes or until slightly tender.
2. While the pepper cooks, bring a pot of water to boil on the stove top. Once water boils, add a dash of salt and the diced potatoes. Boil potatoes for about 3-5 minutes. Drain well and set aside.
3. While the potatoes are boiling. On a stove top, heat 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil over medium to low heat. Add a dash of crushed red pepper, diced onions, sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix ingredients together well, cover pan and allow onions to caramelize for about 10 minutes.
4. In the saute pan, grate the garlic clove with a microplane and mix in well. Also, crumble the chicken Chorizo into the pan. Break up well and cook for about 5-7 minutes or until about done.
5. Add the diced boiled potatoes, chili powder, cumin and another pinch of salt and pepper into the Chorizo mixture. Cook on medium heat and stir frequently. Once potatoes start to break down and mixture turns into a hash, add the the lime, cilantro and half of the shredded cheese. Mix well.
6. Stuff the Chorizo and potato hash into each bell pepper. Return peppers to grill and cook for about 10 minutes. Top each pepper with the remaining shredded cheese. Cook for another 7-10 minutes or until cheese is golden and bubbly.
Serve this beautiful dish with a vibrant green salad and corn on the cob or freshly baked corn bread. You will love the smokey flavor brought to this dish by utilizing the grill. Use this method of creating a potato hash with any ingredients you have on hand to create an amazing stuffed bell pepper. Try potato, ham and cheddar stuffed peppers or a "baked potato" stuffed pepper by using potato, bacon, chives and cheddar. I think I will try that one next. Enjoy!