If there’s one thing I know for sure, it’s that I’m a die-hard Trader Joe’s ho. I almost never cheat on that grocery, and it’s seriously 80 blocks from my apartment. I’m devoted to my store. NO ONE takes care of me like TJ’s. They have bananas for $0.19. It’s unreal; I’m like on a euphoric high every time I go in there. One time I spent less than $20 on a week’s worth of groceries, and I almost made out with my cashier in celebration. I was just that thrilled.
That said, I love making stuffed bell peppers, because one red and one green bell pepper set me back just $1.99. Can DO. I’ve been slacking on the spicy side lately, so I decided to make vegetable and wild rice stuffed peppers baked in jalapeno juice. As the rice was cooking, I gutted (AKA cut out the ribs and seeds) and par-boiled the peppers for about 10 minutes like so:
I timed it pretty well, because my rice finished cooking as my peppers were still boiling away. I mixed the rice with spinach, grape tomatoes, feta, and a few chopped jalapenos. I seasoned with just salt and pepper, letting the jalapenos dominate the flavor. My innards looked like this:
Aren’t my innards beautiful? I drained my peppers and stuffed them with the rice mixture, and then put them in a pan. I poured the juice from my jalapeno jar in the bottom on the pan, and then covered them in aluminum foil. They baked for 20 minutes at 400 degrees, during which time my entire apartment reeked of jalapenos. I removed the foil and baked for 10 minutes uncovered until they looked like this:
Seriously, they were the best I’ve ever made. The tomatoes were cooked to where you bite into them, and the juice explodes in your mouth in the most delightful way. At the risk of sounding Lechter-esque, I was a huge fan of the tasty skin. It was perfectly browned and juicy due to the jalapeno marinade. I would have made it into a dress if that weren’t, like, much too impractical. I don’t really need to attract every rat in the city. Alas, see below for the cross section of the entire thing: