It’s not often that I share a themed recipe. In fact, it’s pretty much never. But it’s Hallowe’en – when else can you make a piece of rice look like a maggot crawling out of a pepper’s eye?
That’s right, never. Because it’s disgusting – and therefore perfect for this time of year.
Luckily, despite the grim appearance of these pumpkin stuffed peppers, they’re actually pretty delicious, so even if you’re reading this after Hallowe’en, you can still make and enjoy these little babies (but probably don’t bother cutting faces in them or people might think you’re a little strange).
The filling of these stuffed peppers is really easy – spring onions, black beans, tinned pumpkin, some feta cheese, and some rice. Add a bit of smoked paprika and some s + p, and you’re good to go. In fact I even used one of those trays of pre-cooked rice that I’m always on about, so in my case the filling didn’t need any pre-cooking whatsoever (though of course you can cook your rice from scratch if you prefer – ditto boiling your own black beans).
By the way, if you’re in the UK like me, you might find it hard to get your hands on a tin of pumpkin. I had the same problem, so I bought some from Amazon (yes, really). It’s not the cheapest ever, but I think it’s worth it to have a bit of fun at this time of year.
Of course, the most fun part of stuffing a little pepper jack o’lantern is getting to stick a knife into his head and tear him open… (sorry, I think I’ve got a little carried away with the Hallowe’en spirit).
Now, what I really need your help with is a Hallowe’en costume. I’m going to a party on Saturday and I have absolutely no idea what to wear. I’m not a fan of dressing up whatsoever (read: I hate it), so I don’t want anything too extravagant or expensive – just something easy I can throw together, preferably with clothes I already have (or at least things that can be worn more than once a year!), plus maybe a bit of gruesome make up. All ideas are welcome!
- 6 orange bell peppers
- 1/2 tbsp oil
- 2 spring onions, sliced
- 400 g tin black beans, drained (240g, or ~ 1 1/4 cups, when drained)
- 425 g pumpkin puree (~ 1 1/2 cups)
- 100 g feta cheese, diced (~ 3/4 cup diced)
- 280 g cooked rice (~ 2 cups)
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- Black pepper
Heat the oven to 200°C (Gas Mark 6 / 400°F).
Cut straight across the top of each pepper, and remove the seeds. Cut a jack o’lantern face on each pepper using a small knife (don’t make the holes too large or your filling will fall out!).
Set the tops of the peppers aside, and place the main bodies of the peppers cut-side-down in a baking dish. Drizzle lightly with oil, and roast for around 20 minutes, until slightly soft.
Meanwhile, add the chopped spring onions, black beans, pumpkin puree, diced feta, cooked rice and smoked paprika to a large bowl, and mix to combine. Season to taste.
When the peppers are slightly soft, turn them over, and stuff with the pumpkin mixture. Replace the tops of the peppers, and return to the oven for a further 20 minutes or so, until the peppers are soft and just starting to turn golden.
Note: Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on exactly what ingredients you choose.
Got some pumpkin left over? Try pot pies!