Where Is My Spoon Recipes Main Dish Beef, Pork and Lamb Stuffed Peppers with Mince in Tomato Sauce
stuffed peppers with mince
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Stuffed peppers with mince, rice and tomato sauce, Turkish or Eastern European style of cooking stuffed peppers.

 

STUFFED PEPPERS IN TOMATO SAUCE

 

Stuffed Peppers

 

I would say, this is pretty much the standard Eastern and Southern European way of stuffing peppers and of cooking them in tomato sauce.

My grandmother cooked her stuffed peppers in a similar way, I’ve eaten similar stuffed peppers cooked by Hungarian and Bulgarian cooks and this recipe was actually called Turkish Stuffed Peppers, so… there you have it.

 

STUFFED PEPPERS WITH MINCE

It is definitely one of my favorite ways of eating stuffed peppers: comforting, full of childhood memories, completely satisfying.

I love the sweet bitterness of the peppers, the heartiness given by the meat, the luscious, slightly sweet-sour tomato sauce and most of all the dill aroma.

The dill reminds me of my grandmother’s cooking more than anything else in this stuffed peppers in tomato sauce recipe. She would use liberal amounts of dill in her kitchen, not only when cooking stuffed peppers, but for many other dishes.

I remember her coming home from the market with huge dill bunches in her bag, one of those bunches was probably 10 times larger than what I usually get around here. One would think, she would not manage to use it all before it went bad, but she always did.

She used it, for instance, to make this Romanian Pea and Chicken Stew, one of my favorite childhood meals or she would make scrambled eggs which contained so much dill and scallions that they were more green than yellow, she put it in vegetable soups, in the potato stews which she cooked so often and so on.

 

stuffed peppers with mince

 

INGREDIENTS FOR STUFFED PEPPERS IN TOMATO SAUCE

Peppers:
  • I like to use pointed red peppers to make these stuffed peppers recipe, it is the kind of peppers my grandmother would always use in Romania, I have actually never even seen a bell pepper until I moved to Germany.
  • However, red bell peppers are perfectly OK to use for this recipe.
  • Pointed peppers are generally smaller than red bell peppers, so if you choose to make these stuffed peppers with mince using regular bell peppers, make sure you choose some that are about the size of a pointed pepper, not the huge bell peppers one can buy sometimes.
Mince:
  • You can use either beef, pork or a mixture of beef and pork to make these stuffed peppers in tomato sauce. My grandmother (and I suppose the majority of Romanian people) would use pork.
  • If you want to go for the Turkish version of this stuffed peppers recipe, then you should definitely use beef.
  • I rarely use only pork, normally I would go for either beef or a mixture of beef and pork.
Spices:
Sweet paprika powder:
  • You definitely need the sweet paprika  sort, not the hot or smoked one. Make sure you buy good quality paprika powder, I know for a fact that the cheapest available sweet paprika powder in Germany tastes only of dust…
Dill:
  • I feel that fresh (or frozen dill) are a must in this stuffed peppers recipe, they give the dish that special Southern or Eastern European flavor.
Stock:
  • Most of the times I use homemade chicken stock, I almost always have some in the fridge or freezer.
  • However, if you don’t have homemade stock, choose a good quality brand of chicken or beef stock.

 

stuffed peppers with mince

 

HOW TO MAKE STUFFED PEPPERS IN TOMATO SAUCE

Filling for stuffed peppers:

  • Cook the rice according to the packet’s instructions. Drain well and let cool while you prepare the rest.
  • Remove the tops and the seeds of the peppers. Soak the white bread in some water for a couple of minutes, take it out and squeeze it with your hands to remove the excess water.
  • Chop the onion very finely and grate the garlic cloves. Chop the dill.
  • Mix together the ground beef, bread, rice, sweet paprika powder, egg, onion, garlic, dill and salt and pepper to taste. Mix with your hands and fill the peppers with the mixture.

Tomato sauce for stuffed peppers:

  • Make the tomato sauce. Cook the onions until translucent, add the garlic and the sweet paprika and stir shortly.
  • Add the chicken or beef stock, tomato paste, tomato puree, salt, pepper and sugar and stir well. Place the stuffed peppers into the sauce. Cook on medium-low heat, covered, for about 10 minutes.
  • Turn the peppers on the other side and cook for further 10 minutes. Turn the peppers in the sauce again, turn the heat to low and continue simmering for another 15 minutes or until the peppers are soft.
  • It might take longer if the peppers are larger, poke them with a fork to see how soft they are and prolong the cooking time accordingly, you want them to be soft, but still holding their shape.
  • Adjust the taste with more salt and pepper, stir most of the chopped dill in the sauce and sprinkle the rest on top.

 

HOW TO SERVE STUFFED PEPPERS IN TOMATO SAUCE?

  • Serve with boiled or mashed potatoes. Bread would be fine as well, but I definitely prefer potatoes when having these stuffed peppers in tomato sauce.
  • The stuffed peppers are very suitable for reheating, but don’t forget to stir and to turn them a couple of times in the sauce while reheating.

 

PIN IT FOR LATER!

 

stuffed peppers in tomato sauce

 

Stuffed Peppers with Mince in Tomato Sauce

Stuffed Peppers with Mince in Tomato Sauce

Yield: 6
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Stuffed peppers with mince, rice and tomato sauce, Turkish or Eastern European style of cooking stuffed peppers.

Ingredients

  • For the peppers:
  • 1 kg/ 2.2 lbs red peppers (about 8-12, depending on size) (See note 1)
  • 75 g/ 2.6 oz rice
  • 450 g/ 1 lbs lean ground beef (See note 2)
  • 60 g/ 2.1 oz white bread, crust removed
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika powder
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill (See note 3)
  • 1 large egg
  • fine sea salt and black pepper
  • For the sauce:
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 large garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika powder
  • 750 ml/ 2 ½ cups chicken or beef stock
  • 100 g/ 3.5 oz tomato paste
  • 300 g/ 10.5 oz tomato puree
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • salt and pepper
  • 4-6 tablespoons chopped fresh dill

Instructions

Stuffed peppers:

    1. Cook the rice in salted water, drain well and let cool until you prepare the rest.
    2. Cut and remove the tops of the peppers, discarding the seeds and the membranes as well. Soak the white bread in some water for a couple of minutes, take it out and squeeze it with your hands to remove the excess water. Chop the onion very finely and grate the garlic cloves.
    3. In a bowl mix the ground beef, soaked bread, cooled rice, sweet paprika powder, egg, onion, garlic cloves, chopped dill and salt and pepper to taste. Mix with your hand and fill the peppers with this mixture.



Sauce:

  1. For the sauce, chop the second onion and the garlic cloves very finely. Heat the olive oil in a large pan and cook the onions until translucent. Add the garlic and the sweet paprika and stir for one minute more.
  2. Give the chicken or beef stock to the pan together with the tomato paste, tomato puree, salt, pepper and sugar and stir well. Place the stuffed peppers into the sauce.
  3. Cook on medium-low heat, covered, for about 10 minutes. Turn the peppers on the other side and cook for further 10 minutes. Turn the peppers in the sauce again, turn the heat to low and continue simmering for another 15 minutes or until the peppers are soft.
  4. It might take longer if the peppers are large, poke them with a fork to see how soft they are and prolong the cooking time accordingly, you want them to be soft, but still holding their shape.
  5. Adjust the taste with more salt and pepper, stir most of the chopped dill in the sauce and sprinkle the rest on top.

Notes

Note 1: Use either red pointed bell peppers or small to medium red bell peppers (not the really large red bell peppers).

Note 2: You can use a mixture of beef and pork or only pork as well.

Note 3: If you cannot find fresh dill, frozen dill is fine as well. Dried dill is not an option, please don't use it for this dish.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1-2
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 530Total Fat: 25gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 165mgSodium: 912mgCarbohydrates: 33gFiber: 5gSugar: 15gProtein: 45g
Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.

 

 

8 comments
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8 comments

Chris Scheuer 10/09/2016 - 15:06

Yum, sounds wonderful. I love all that fresh dill. I think dill is an underrated herb, it adds so much fabulous flavor.

Reply
Nammi 11/09/2016 - 04:50

Looks yumm….. we are all connected some how through food enjoy your weekend

Reply
Kathy @ Beyond the Chicken Coop 11/09/2016 - 13:10

There’s nothing better than traditional recipes made by our grandparents. They knew how to cook and how to use up everything. I love dill and it sounds great in these peppers! This looks very comforting and delicious.

Reply
mjskitchen 12/09/2016 - 02:26

Simply luscious!!! Love your sauce and those peppers sitting in it make me hungry! YUM!

Reply
Sissi 17/09/2016 - 16:07

I cook stuffed peppers quite often (Hungarian recipe) and I totally agree the long pointed ones are the best! They are such a perfect end-of-summer/beginning of the autumn dish….

Reply
Thao @ In Good Flavor 20/03/2019 - 17:07

This looks so good and so comforting! The dill is an herb I didn’t expect, but it sounds delicious. Both my kids would love this too, the hubby…not so much. He is mostly anti-cooked veggies 🙁

Reply
Kelly | Foodtasia 21/03/2019 - 17:18

Adina, these stuffed peppers look so delicious! Love the dill in them!

Reply
Karen (Back Road Journal) 24/03/2019 - 17:10

When we lived in New England, I used to grow Cubanelle peppers that grew large and turned red…they would be perfect for your stuffed pepper recipe.

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