One of my favorite things about the CSA (the list is starting to rack up, huh?) is the assortment of sausages they make. Every time we pick up our share, we get something different; Italian sausage, garlic sausage, feta and spinach sausage, breakfast sausage, Polish kielbasa sausage or chorizo. Well, those are the ones we’ve received so far at least. I’m sure they make even more than that.
Chorizo is typically made with pork and a mix of different seasonings. Chestnut Farm adds chili peppers for a little heat, which really takes the flavor to the next level. Recently, I’ve been seeing chorizo used as a meat substitute in a variety of different recipes, including breakfast sandwiches, burger patties, or for anything taco/burrito/Mexican related. Chorizo is one of those unique flavors that add an awesome twist to some traditional recipes, like stuffed peppers.
Stuffed peppers are one of those meals you can really tailor to your, or your family’s, tastes. They are easy, and healthy, and you can basically add in any ingredient you want. We usually use ground beef or turkey (if we’re feeling especially healthy), but decided to try out the chorizo this time around. You can also add in things like mushrooms or onions, and if you’re not using chorizo, I would suggest adding some spices for a more developed favor.
Here’s what I used:
- 1 lb Chestnut Farms Chorizo sausage, casings removed
- 5 Large Bell Peppers, stems removed
- 1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes (crushed also works well)
- 1 cup red quinoa (any kind works here, this is just what I had on hand)
- 3 Large handfuls of fresh spinach
- Shredded Mexican cheese
Preheat oven to 375° F. Place the peppers with the tops and stems removed onto a lined banking dish, and bake for 20 minutes. I bake these first so the pepper gets a little cooked before adding the delicious “stuffing”. If you want to omit this step, feel free, but your pepper will be more on the raw (crunchier) side.
While the peppers are in the oven, add the chorizo to a heated pan on the stove. You generally won’t need any olive oil as the chorizo has enough fat to keep it from sticking. Since the casings are removed from the sausages, you should break up the meat so it has more of a ground texture. Once the chorizo is lightly browned, stir in the diced tomatoes and quinoa. If there isn’t much liquid from your tomatoes, you should add about 1/4 cup of water, knowing the quinoa will soak up most of the sauce while it cooks. Cover the pan and simmer on low for 20 minutes. Once the quinoa has absorbed most of the liquid, add in your spinach and stir. The heat from the mixture will cook the spinach quickly, so keep an eye on it.
Remove the peppers from the oven, and generously spoon in your chorizo mixture. Top generously with cheese (is there really any other way to add cheese?) and place back in the oven for 10 minutes, or until the cheese is nicely melted.
Serve, and enjoy!