Crawfish-Stuffed Bell Peppers

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wwltv.com

Posted on June 20, 2011 at 6:42 PM

4 bell peppers, cut in halves and oven-roasted

½ stick butter

4 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

2 cups vegetable seasoning mix

4 Tbsp. minced garlic

2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

8 oz. fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced

½ cup vegetable stock

1 can Cream of Shrimp Soup (or Cream of Celery Soup)

2 eggs, beaten separately

1 Tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce

½ tsp. Frank Davis Garlic Hot Sauce

1 lb. fresh crawfish tails and fat

½ cup fresh parsley, finely minced

2 cups buttered French bread crumbs (divided)

2 cups Acini Pepe Pasta, precooked al dente

3 tsp. Frank Davis Seafood Seasoning

1 bunch of green onions, thinly sliced

½ cup shredded Parmesan

 

 

Start off by working with the bell peppers. First, cut them in half vertically, remove the seed pod, and trim away the whitish veins. When the insides are completely cleaned out, rinse the peppers under cold running water in the sink. Then with a handful of paper towels, dry them thoroughly.

At this point, spray a 12 x 18-inch heavy-duty baking sheet evenly with Pam. Then place each pepper half onto the pan, slide it uncovered into a 375 degree oven, and roast the halves for about 30 minutes or until softened.

While the peppers are in the oven, take a large fry pan and combine both the butter and the olive oil and bring it up to heat over a medium flame. Then drop in the seasoning vegetables and minced garlic, stir them together briskly, and saute the mixture until the produce is wilted and softened.

Meanwhile, in a separate non-stick skillet, pan fry the mushrooms a few at a time in the two tablespoons of olive oil until they turn a crispy golden brown. When they're ready, set them aside momentarily.

At this stage the rest is simple: into the seasoning vegetables stir in the veggie stock, the cream soup, the two beaten eggs, the Worcestershire, and the hot sauce. Now whisk everything together briskly until completely blended -- then quickly remove the pot from the fire so that it can start to cool down.

This is the time when you stir (or fold) in the crawfish tails, the parsley, and one cup of bread crumbs, all the pasta, and the crispy mushrooms. I suggest you take an extra minute or two to make sure everything is uniformly mixed. Then season the stuffinf base "to taste" with seafood seasoning, fold in the thinly-sliced green onions, and allow the stuffing to cool even further.

Finally, with your hands, form boulettes about the size of tennis balls and stuff them forcefully into the pepper halves, ensuring that each one is mounded on top.

All that's left to do is place the peppers back on the baking sheet, top them with a healthy sprinkling of buttered bread crumbs, and crown each one with a fist full of shredded Parmesan.

Now bake them uncovered for 30 minutes at 350 degrees until the crumbs and cheese turn all golden brown and toasty. I recommend you serve the peppers piping hot, alongside a cold, tossed green salad. Of course, stuffed peppers can also be enjoyed right from the fridge with a glass of chilled, white German wine and toast rounds.

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Chef's Notes:

Here's yet another way to stuff the peppers. When the stuffing mix becomes cool to the touch, shape the mixture into individual boulettes about the size of tennis balls. Then quickly dip each boulette into about two beaten eggs, roll them into the seasoned bread crumbs, gently drop them into deep oil (at 350 degrees), then forcefully stuff the boulettes into the bell peppers. Sprinkle with a fist full of Parmesan cheese and bake them at 350 degrees until toasty and bubbly.

If you can't find acini di pepe pasta where you shop, you can easily substitute orzo in its place.

To make buttered bread crumbs, take a bowl of bread crumbs, a rubber spatula, and some melted butter. Then a little at a time, pour the butter over the bread crumbs in the bowl, toss repeatedly with the spatula, and coat each crumb with the buttery baste. Keep extra buttered bread crumbs in the refrigerator until needed for topping.

 

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