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Peperoni alla piemontese (Stuffed Peppers with Roasted Onions & Mozzarella)

Serves 4

For the peppers:
2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1 small white onion, finely chopped
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
21 oz | 3 cups crushed tomatoes
1/2 tsp dried Italian herbs
1 pinch sugar
2 large red bell peppers, halved, cored and seeded
1 large red onion, sliced
6 oz | 3/4 cup fresh mozzarella, drained
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper

For the basil oil:
1 large bunch basil, leaves only
4 oz | 1/2 cup olive oil, plus extra as needed

To serve:
1 large handful basil, leaves only, roughly chopped
4-1/2 oz | 3/4 cup kalamata olives

For the peppers: 

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan set over medium heat until hot. Add the onion, garlic and a pinch of salt, sweating until softened, about 5-6 minutes.

Stir in the crushed tomatoes, herbs, sugar and some salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer and cook steadily until slightly thickened, about 5-6 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Spoon into the pepper halves, arranging them in a roasting pan or on a rimmed baking sheet.

Toss the red onion with a little olive oil and some salt and pepper. Arrange around the peppers.

Roast for 20-30 minutes until the peppers are tender to the tip of a knife. Remove from the oven and top each with some mozzarella. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and set aside.

For the basil oil: 

Blend the basil leaves with the olive oil in a food processor until smooth. Blend in more olive oil as needed to thin out the consistency to a pouring consistency.

To serve: 

Arrange the peppers and onions on a serving platter. Top with the chopped basil, olives and some basil oil before serving.

Tags: basil (4)  evoo (2)  italian food (11)  italian recipe (12)  mozzarella (4)  pepper (1)  

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