Can you believe that I’ve never made stuffed peppers before?! Crazy, right? Actually…now that I think about it, I’ve only ever even eaten them once. It was at a work potluck and one of my co-workers made a delicious rice and scallop stuffed pepper. But other than that…nada! After eating the leftover bulgur salad for three days in a row, I decided in order to avoid tossing it, it needed to be morphed into a completely new dish. Don’t get me wrong…it was delicious as is and you should have all made it by now! But after three days, this girl needs some variety!
Tempeh and Bulgur Stuffed Peppers
2 red peppers, top sliced off and ribs and seeds scraped out
1 red pepper, chopped
handful of mushrooms, chopped
1 package tempeh, crumbled
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 stalk celery, chopped
handful of spinach, chopped
2 tbsp white wine
1 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 tbsp nutritional yeast (this is like vegan parm cheese…adds a real richness and nice flavor)
1 can fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf
1 tsp dried basil
1-1 1/2 cup cooked bulgur (I used the leftover bulgur salad so it had lots of flavor added already but you could choose plain bulgur or really any rice or other grain you like)
Preheat oven to 350 and place whole peppers in baking dish sprayed with cooking spray and bake for about 20 minutes until slightly softened.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add some oil. Saute onion, celery, red pepper, garlic, and mushrooms until soft. Add tempeh, wine, soy sauce, oregano and salt and pepper. Cook until no liquid remains. Add spinach and cook until wilted. Mix with bulgur and yeast and stir to combine. Divide among the peppers…really mound it in! You might have some stuffing leftover but that’s okay…it’s delicious on its own too! Place peppers in baking dish and pour tomatoes around it. Mix in basil and bay leaf to tomatoes and bake covered for about 45 minutes. Uncover and bake another 15 minutes.
I also enjoyed some comfort food recently in the form of a giant bowl of noodles soup. I’ve been to Momofuku to try their bowl of lovely ramen noodles and delicious broth and decided it was time to compare them to the ever popular Ippudo. We arrived at Ippudo, mere blocks from it’s noodle rival, just before 6 and were welcomed with screaming and shouting from the staff. My friend and I had been to Momofuku together so it seemed fitting we would enjoy ramen again together and then do a fair comparison. While we were seated right away, literally 10 minutes later there was a crowd at the door and an hour wait. Definitely a popular after work spot!
Comparison #1: Buns: Momofuku shrimp buns vs. Ippudu chicken buns (I know, not exactly even steven but we felt like chicken). We both agreed we enjoyed the actual doughy and soft bun at Ippudo but found the shrimp filling at Momofuku to be superior. So maybe #1 goes to Momofuku? Now…the main event…the noodles.
Comparison #2: Noodle bowls: This is where we both agreed Ippudo wins. Momofuku was good…but this broth was so rich, creamy, and had that “umami” flavor from the miso paste. The second best thing about this bowl was the egg. So flavorful, not soft, not hard…just right! We both couldn’t get over this perfectly cooked and seasoned egg.
With bellies full of porky miso broth, my friend told me she had never been to Big Gay Ice Cream before. Well…we nearly sprinted to the shop and I informed her, being her first time, she must try the salty pimp. I think my favorite thing is watching a Big Gay virgin take their first bite of this salty, sweet, and creamy cone…it really is perfection.
I went with a new creation by one of the very friendly staff. This malty syrup drizzled over their fantastic soft serve was a hit. These guys can really do no wrong in my eyes. Any other noodles/ramen shops I should add to my list to make it a fair fight?