This creative and delicious recipe by our talented food writing pal Aimée Wimbush-Bourque calls for fresh lasagna noodles, but we opted for cooked quinoa in this version and can vouch that both versions are wonderful.
Cheesy Stuffed Sweet Peppers with Quinoa
2 tsp unsalted butter
3 oz baby spinach
3/4 cup ricotta cheese
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
4 medium bell peppers, washed (see note below)
1 cup tomato sauce
2 1/2 - 3 cups cooked Flourist Golden Quinoa
1 1/2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
Fresh basil, for garnish (optional)
Pre-heat the oven to 400F. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the spinach and cook only until it's wilted about 2 minutes. Transfer spinach to a fine mesh sieve and press out extra liquid. Chop the cooked spinach and transfer to a small bowl. Add the ricotta cheese, salt and pepper. Mix well and taste for sufficient seasoning.
Cut bell peppers in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Lightly oil a 13 x 9 inch baking pan and place pepper halves in it, cut side up. Spoon 1 tbsp tomato sauce into each pepper and top with approx. 2-3 tbsp quinoa. Divide the spinach mixture among the peppers and sprinkle half of the mozzarella on top. Repeat another layer of tomato sauce, quinoa and mozzarella.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until peppers are tender when pierced with a knife. Cool slightly before serving, top with fresh basil if desired.
Note: Look for bell peppers with four lobes on the bottom, they will sit flatter in the pan once halved.