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Three Meat Stuffed Italian Banana Peppers

  • Author: The Kitchen Whisperer
  • Yield: 4-6 1x

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Italian Meat Stuffed Banana Peppers
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Ingredients

  • 1014 banana peppers
  • 1lb ground pork
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef (80/20)
  • 1/2 pound loose Italian hot sausage
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1 1/2 Tbl garlic, minced (~5 cloves)
  • 1 Tbl oregano
  • 1/2 Tbl parsley
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup tomato puree
  • 1 1/4 cups grated mozzarella cheese, divided
  • 3 slices bread, torn into pieces
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 Xl eggs
  • 33 1/2 cups Spicy Banana Pepper Sauce (or favorite marinara)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Cut the tops off the peppers and set them aside (throwing away the stem itself reserving the tops for another use). Wearing rubber/plastic gloves, take a knife and chop off the top of the peppers and run the knife on the top about 1/4” from the tip to the top of the pepper. You do not want to split them in half; you want the pepper whole. Remove the rib and seeds; discard.
  3. In a small bowl add the milk and bread. Press the bread down to ensure all of the pieces are wet. Let sit for 2 minutes.
  4. In a large bowl combine the pork, beef, sausage, onion, garlic, oregano, parsley, pepper, salt, red pepper flakes, tomato paste, tomato puree, eggs, 3/4 cup of cheese and milk/bread mixture. Gently mix just to combine. The mixture should be wet but hold a shape
  5. Using a large piping bag or plastic bag filled with the meat mixture (with large hole cut in the corner) pipe the mixture into the peppers. Fill the peppers up completely taking the meat to the tips of the peppers.
  6. In a large baking dish ladle half of the Spicy Banana Pepper Sauce on the bottom. Lay each pepper down into the sauce. If needed make another row of peppers with sauce in between the layers or use a second tray. Spoon the rest of the sauce over top of the peppers.
  7. Cover with foil tightly and bake for 40-50 minutes or until the pepper is tender and the temperature reads 165F inside the meat.
  8. Remove the foil, add the rest of the cheese over top of the peppers and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes or until melted.
  9. Store any leftovers in the fridge.

Notes

To freeze:

I cook mine then freeze them. Some folks freeze raw. I don’t care for the way the pepper turns when it’s frozen raw. It gets an almost slimy texture.

To freeze, once baked and cooled put some Spicy Banana Pepper Sauce in a freezer pan, add the cooked (cooled) peppers, top with some more sauce and double wrap in plastic then foil. Freeze for up to 3 months.

To cook later on, unwrap to remove the plastic wrap, re-cover with foil and stick the cold pan in the oven. Set the oven to 350F and bake for 30 minutes or until the center is hot.

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