Have you seen those bags of sweet mini peppers showing up in the markets recently? They've become my new favorite snack. I down them raw like popcorn. Crunchy vegetable popcorn, with stems for handles.
When the grill is out I just toss the peppers with olive oil and plop them on the grill. Sprinkle with salt and you have the easiest pepper side ever for grilled meat.
The other day I had some leftover smoked mozzarella from a recipe and decided to stuff my favorite little peppers with it.
As if these little peppers couldn't get better. Wow!
Think of this treat as an Italian take on jalapeno poppers. A little mozz, a basil leaf, a drizzling of olive oil and balsamic, all packaged in a cute sweet mini pepper.
You can grill, bake, or broil (or even microwave, though you won't get any browning).
We're using smoked Mozzarella because it is more flavorful than regular, but you can use either.
Mozzarella Stuffed Sweet Mini Peppers
- 1 pound of sweet mini peppers (about a dozen)
- 1/4 pound (115 g) smoked mozzarella cheese, cut into 1/4-inch thick and 2 inch long batons
- 12 basil leaves (as many basil leaves as peppers)
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- Salt to taste
Stuff mini peppers with smoked mozzarella and basil:
Working one pepper at a time, place flat side down in a way that is most stable for the pepper.
With a small sharp knife, cut a 2 1/2 inch slit down the middle on the top of the pepper.
If there is a seed pod, scoop it out with a spoon.
Stuff the pepper with a basil leaf wrapped mozzarella stick.
When you have stuffed all the peppers, brush them on all sides with olive oil. Drizzle balsamic vinegar in the cut openings.
Cook on grill, in oven, or under broiler:
Preheat grill, oven, or broiler for high direct heat (if oven, set to 400°F).
If grilling, grill covered, cut side up on high direct heat until you have grill marks, then lower the heat to medium until the cheese is melted and the peppers have begun to soften, about 5 to 10 minutes.
If broiling or baking, place on a roasting pan and cook until the cheese is melted and peppers have browned and softened, about 5 to 10 minutes.
Sprinkle with salt to taste.
Let rest for a few minutes before serving.