I credit my love of cooking to becoming vegan but even more so to my dad.
My dad, Pat, loved to cook; he'd cater all my parties, cook amazing dinners and every Sunday morning he'd make a huge breakfast- not because he had to, but because he loved to. Not surprisingly, one of his favorite Holidays was Thanksgiving, because he got to cook a huge meal for the people that he loved. Even after I told my parents that I decided to go vegan, they were extremely supportive. I would often find him on the computer, researching information, to make the stuff he cooked "Tracie Friendly".
Shortly after he retired, he started working for a Jewish Temple as a janitor. One day, they were looking for someone to cater a meeting. My dad mentioned that he could cook and, as it turned out, he did such an impressive job that - from that day, until the day he left - he catered most of their events. I remember him coming home and being all excited about all the new, kosher dishes that he concocted. His dream was to open his own catering business, and while that dream never came to fruition, cooking for the Temple was a good alternative for him.
Unfortunately, he passed away this past October. He may be gone, but his love of cooking will live on through me. :)
I decided to name this stuffed pepper recipe after my dad because, after all, I learned how to make these by watching him. It's been slightly modified and adapted, but the basic recipe is still his. ♥
Pat's Savory Stuffed Peppers
2 Large Peppers
1 Cup (dry) Rice [I used Royal Blend - Texmati White, Brown, Wild & Red but any kind will do.]
1 1/2 Tbsp Osem "Chicken Style" Consomme
1/2 Of an Onion
2 Cloves of garlic (crushed)
2 handfuls of baby spinach
2/3 Bag Boca Veggie Ground Crumbles
(1) 1.5 oz packet of Meat Loaf Seasoning (I used McCormick 30% Less Sodium Meat Loaf Seasoning Mix)
(2) 24 oz Jars Tomato Sauce (I used Francesco Rinaldi Tomato & Basil and Garden Vegetable)
GO Veggie! Grated Parmesan Style Topping (optional)
Salt & Pepper (to taste)
Cut the tops off and clean out two (2) large peppers.
Cook one (1) cup of (dry) rice according to directions on package. When the water comes to a boil, add 1 1/2 Tbsp of Consomme, stir and then cover.
While the rice is cooking, saute the onions, garlic, spinach in a pan until the spinach has almost wilted. Push mixture to one side of the pan and pour in 2/3 of a bag of Boca Crumbles until throughly heated. (The crumbles should only take a few minutes to heat.)
Once the rice is done, mix the rice, crumbles and the onion/garlic/spinach mixture together and add about 2/3 of the packet of Meat Loaf Seasoning. (You could actually use the entire packet if you'd like - I just happened to only use two-thirds)
Use a large spoon to fill the peppers with the mixture - make sure you fill them all the way to the top! Place the peppers in a sauce pan -with high sides - and then pour the two (2) jars of sauce so that they cover the peppers/pan evenly.
[Tip: Try to make sure that the pan small enough so that the two peppers fit snugly and it's deep enough so that you can almost cover the peppers fully. If you don't have enough sauce, you can fill one of the jars up with water and add that to the pan. Just make sure you mix the water & sauce together.]
Cover the pan and bring the sauce to a boil. Once the sauce is boiling, reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes.
After pepper is plated, top with the extra sauce and sprinkle on some GO Veggie! Parmesan topping.