I got this recipe from my mom. She brought Larry and me some leftovers - Larry was skeptical (no meat?!), but we both licked our plates clean and Larry said "Where's more?". The next day I asked her for the recipe. So there you have it - despite the lack of meat, this recipe is 'boy approved'.
- 1/2 cup olive oil, divided
- 4 cups lightly packed fresh bread crumbs (they must be fresh - not the kind from the can!)
- 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons dried parsley
- 3/4 cup coarsely chopped giardiniera (Italian-style pickled veggies in a jar - find them in the pickle aisle)
- 2 tablespoons capers, rinsed, drained and coarsely chopped - optional (I didn't use these, but if you have some in your pantry, try throwing them in)
- 1 1/2 cups grated cheese (parmesan, romano, or a combination of the two)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- freshly ground pepper
- 4 red bell peppers (I used 3 peppers, since the peppers I had were COLOSSAL)
- (2) 14 ounce cans diced tomatoes (not drained)
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease the bottom of a large baking dish with 2 tablespoons olive oil.
In a large skillet, heat 1/4 cup olive oil over medium heat. Add the bread crumbs, garlic, and parsley and cook, stirring frequently, for 8 minutes or until the bread is pale golden and starting to crisp. Remove skillet from heat. Add the giardiniera, capers, cheese, salt, and pepper to taste, and mix gently. Set aside.
Cut the peppers in half lengthwise and remove and discard the ribs and seeds. Spread one can of diced tomatoes into an even layer in the bottom of the baking dish and arrange the pepper halves on top. Spoon the breadcrumb filling into the hollowed-out pepper halves. Reserve any leftover stuffing for sprinkling over the peppers before baking.
From the second can of diced tomatoes, add a spoonful or two of tomatoes to the tops of the peppers. Pour any remaining tomatoes around the peppers into the baking dish. Sprinkle the peppers with any remaining breadcrumbs and drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil over the peppers.
Bake the peppers at 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until the tops are nicely browned and the peppers are just tender.