I am a huge fan of mixing the sweet with the savory.

And this far-from-traditional stuffed pepper recipe does exactly that.

I got this idea from this Essentials of Latin Cooking cookbook that was gifted to me for the big 3-0…

It’s a bit different than the original recipe however, which I adapted to make more user-friendly (read: easier) and use the ingredients that I had on hand.

But the flavor profile is much the same. Spicy, savory, sweet.

Trifecta?  I think so 😀

Anaheim peppers. A beautifully lime green, mild variety of chili pepper.

You can find these anywhere really. Even my local Food Lion had them 😉

Onions. Pine nuts. Raisins. Say whaaaaa?

Trust me on this one. It.Just.Works.

Simply saute the onion for a few minutes in a bit of olive oil.

Throw in some fresh baby spinach

And let it cook for a few until wilted.  Season w/ salt & pepper too.

Finally, toss in the pine nuts and raisins and give a good stir.

Slice peppers just down the middle to split them, being careful not to break them open.  Remove any seeds as well.

Then just pile in the spinach mixture evenly into each one.

Hello pretty!!

Top each stuffed pepper with a couple thick slices of cheese

And place onto a bed of spicy tomato sauce.

Pomi strained tomatoes + hot sauce.

Yep. That.Is.It. 😀



What a playyyyyyground for those tastebuds. Right? 😛


Bake for a few until the peppers become tender and the cheese bubbly & melted.

Then serve ’em up!

Bet ya never had a stuffed pepper quite like this before 😉

Also bet that you’ll want to have them again and again. Because the flavor is just so uniquely delicious!!

But seriously y’all. I really really enjoyed these. And if you’re feeling adventurous (or even if you’re not?!) I’d definitely recommend giving them a try! 😛

Happy Valentine’s Day y’all!

I came across this on twitter today and couldn’t have put it better myself:

“Valentines Day makes me happy because I love it when we are all a little nicer to each other.”

So on that note, is everyone sharing the happiness and love today?!

I sure hope so 🙂

I’m going to do my lil’ part over in this corner of the internetz world by sharing this 20 minute recipe with ya’ll…

Perfect for a Meatless Monday and perfect for a day when you’re short on time (isn’t that most every week day… just sayin’ 😉 )!

Plus I can pretty much bet that you have 80% of these ingredients in your pantry right about now in some shape or form:

Black beans, jasmine rice, onion, garlic and chopped tomatoes. Am I right?

If so, then looks like all you’ll need is some frozen green peas or whatever veggie you might want to include.  I’m all about making things easy on y’all, ya know 😉

Saute up the onion and garlic in olive oil for a few minutes.

Then add in your tomatoes and beans and give a good stir.  And by the way, any beans would work here, I just happened to have black beans.

Speaking of tomatoes… ??

The awesome folks over at Pomi sent me the most lovely assortment of products just a few days ago…

Including these chopped tomatoes, one of my favorites!

Disclaimer: I received these products for free.

I think y’all already know how huge of a fan I am of Pomi products, so I won’t rave about them again and again

But seriously — just tomatoes you guys, and BPA free

And all “free-ness” aside, I’ve been raving about these tomatoes since forever ago when I was using my own $$ to purchase, just throwin’ that out there 😉

Speaking of BPA, anyone else catch this article on France’s proposed BPA ban?

Okay, sidetracked.  Back to the meal at hand here!!

Now in goes the rice.  I had some jasmine rice to use up, but use whatever you have on hand, adjusting cooking time accordingly.

Some H20 and basic spices:  sea salt, black pepper and smoked paprika.

I alwayssssss forget about smoked paprika.  But gosh it is so darned good! 

Adds such a lovely hint of sweet, smoky flavor to a dish… go get you some, you won’t regret it 🙂

Once the rice is almost done cooking, throw in some frozen peas. Or whatever vegetable you want quite honestly, I bet lima beans, corn, etc. would work well too!

But the green peas add that fun “pop” to each bite that I’m oh so fond of.

Give a good stir and allow to heat through while the rice finishes cooking.

If the mixture soaks up too much liquid just throw a bit more into the pot as it finishes cooking so that it doesn’t dry out.

Anddddddddd we’re done!

See, told you it’d be easy 😛


 I highly recommend serving this dish with a topping of something spicy to really compliment the smoky flavor the smoked paprika adds.

I used sambal oelek.  Wow, aren’t we all surprised there. Ha.

But hot sauce or red pepper flakes would work just as well!


For such a fast throw-together dinner I really enjoyed both the flavors and textures that this dish had to offer!

Plus it made enough for quite a few servings for very little $$. Always a win.

I actually threw it together before heading to Core Barre at my favorite Local Barre studio and when I got home, upon opening the front door, was greeted with the most wonderful smells leftover from the cooking adventure.

‘Twas quite lovely 🙂

It’s the little things people.  Right?

I’ve seen the idea for a tortellini soup all over the internetz lately as the temperatures have started to fall…

Perhaps I peruse wayyyy to many cooking related websites (me, neverrrrr? 😉 ) or perhaps this is some trend that is catching on for the 2011 winter cooking season.  Who knows?!

Either way, I knew that after arriving back home from a weekend of fun in DC, that a comforting soup with cheesy tortellini was just was the doctor ordered.

Plus nothing kicks a body straight into get-back-to-work mode like a healthy dose of (hidden) vegetables! 😛

This recipe was inspired by my friend Courtney over @TheGranolaChronicles, who posted just a few days ago a tortellini soup that used pesto as a flavor addition. Umm yummm!

And since I’m still working through some fresh end-of-summer pesto in my freezer (the stuff freezes wonderfully p.s.) I knew this was the way to go.

Enjoy! 😀

Carrot, onion and olive oil.

Chicken & garlic.

Pesto, sea salt and black pepper.

Organic chicken broth.

Pomi chopped tomatoes plus some H20.  Simmered for 20 minutes.

I think you know how much I love these boxed tomatoes.  So we won’t get into that all over again 😉

But if you’re interested, check out this article on canned tomatoes: 7 Foods That Should Never Cross Your Lips

Think I’ve shared it before but definitely an interesting read 🙂

Cheese tortellini.  Frozen spinach.  Canned white beans.

Simmered for a few more minutes until hot.

 Hello there cheesy noodle goodness 😛


Then served.  With hot sauce to top if you like!

Or even some Parmesan cheese.

Whatever floats your soup boat 😉    

Classic, warm & comforting.

The veggies got perfectly tender and the large chunks of actual tomato were wonderfully smooth with the velvety pesto.  Cheesy tortellini and creamy white beans really made the soup hearty enough to serve as a meal. 

Top with a bit of hot sauce, if you are addicted like me, and you’ll have a most fabulous dinner in no time!

And a highly recommended soup recipe at that 😀