You can use leftover cooked rice (from Chinese take-out?) or make your own. Get the rice started first as it usually takes about 20 minutes to cook. Check out my video on “How to Cook White Rice” for a quick review.
Cleaning the Peppers
While the rice is cooking, get the peppers washed and remove the stem and seeds. Any color bell pepper will do. But remember, the red ones are the sweetest!
Start by slicing off the very top of the peppers.
Then,with a small paring knife, carefully slide the knife around the stem to loosen it. You should then be able to gently pull the stem out.
With a spoon scrape out any remaining seeds and “stem ribs”.
It is important that the bell peppers are able to balance upright on their own. Slice off the tiniest bit off the bottom so that the peppers can stand without rolling over.
Set the cleaned peppers snugly in a baking dish and set this dish aside for just a moment.
Making the Filling
In a large frying pan, over medium-high heat, brown the ground beef and drain off any excess fat. For a quick review, check out my video on “How to Brown Beef”.
Add one can of Rotel tomatoes…
Using a colander, drain one can of black beans in the sink, rinse, and drain again, and add them to the frying pan as well.
Mix everything together and simmer for about 5 minutes.
At this point you could add 1/2 teaspoon of onion powder and 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder if you wish.
Remove the pan from the heat and add 2 cups of cooked rice…
…and 1 and 1/2 cups of pre-shredded Mexican four-cheese blend. (This is a great time-saving way to buy cheese for cooking. Most grocery stores always carry both a Mexican blend and an Italian blend.)
Stir everything together.
Filling the Peppers
(A note: Many recipes have you blanch the cleaned peppers in a large pot of boiling salted water for about 3 minutes before adding the filling. I prefer the peppers to have a bit of a crunch to them, rather than being really soft. Consequently my recipe does not call for blanching the peppers before filling them.)
With a spoon, fill the peppers with the filling.
They should fit snugly in the baking dish!
Cover the baking dish with tin foil and put them in a 375 F. degree preheated oven.
Bake the covered peppers for about 40 minutes and then remove the tin foil…
…and continue cooking for another 10-15 minutes until tops are slightly browned and pepper skin can be pierced easily with a fork.
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