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Croatian Stuffed Peppers (Punjene Paprika)

What reminds one person of home in one country could also remind someone else of home in another, they may have never met, they may speak a different language yet they could share the same feeling for the same dish. Stuffed vegetables are prepared all over the Med, peppers in particular are very popular; better to make this in the summer months when peppers are in season, although it can also work as great comfort food on a cold evening in autumn or winter!

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Ingredients:

6-8 red peppers (not the pointy type!)
400g beef or pork mince
1 cup of rice
2 carrots
2 onions
4 sprigs parsley
2 tsp salt
½ cup of olive oil
2-3 potatoes
2 tbsp plain flour
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp vegetable or dehydrated green herb stock
1 can chopped tomato or 250ml home-made sauce

Procedure:

  • Cut tops off peppers, remove seeds and wash to prepare for filling.
  • Chop carrots and onions in brunoise (or grate them if you don't have time!)
  • Peel the potatoes and cut them in wedges (don't cut them too small as they will over cook and disintegrate!)
  • Finely chop the parsley

1. Fry chopped onions and grated carrots in olive oil at medium to high temperature. Stir constantly.

2. After 2-3 minutes add mince and salt and continue to fry it for another 4-5 minutes.

3. Take it off heat and add rice, plain flour, sweet paprika and dehydrated vegetable or green herb stock. Stir the mixture.

4. Spoon mixture into the peppers, filling them 3/4 of the way.

5. Place peppers in a casserole and intersperse the potatoes between peppers.

6. Pour water until peppers are covered and add tomato sauce, canned or home-made. 

7. Simmer on low for 1 1/2 hours.

8. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve hot.

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