The Hil’s Stuffed Peppers are year-round comfort food

Q: [Last summer] I had a wonderful lunch at The Hil restaurant in the Serenbe community in south Fulton County and ordered their version of stuffed bell peppers. The ground beef filling was delicious and would like to try their recipe at home. Hope that you can get their recipe for me to try. — John Wolfinger, Atlanta

A: Chef/owner Hilary White sent us a version of her stuffed pepper recipe with a note about why it won’t be exactly the same was what’s served at The Hil.

“This is a ‘grocery store’ version for the home cook. The flavor profile will be different than what the reader had for lunch at The Hil. We used veal stock, heirloom tomato stock and Carmen sweet bell peppers from Serenbe Farm. Most of these ingredients are unavailable to the home cook. Recipes like this tell our close-to-the-farm/made-from-scratch story and sometimes motivate people to get to the Saturday Serenbe farmers market!

“This recipe is great when you’re craving comfort food when the weather is really hot. We served this in mid-July when the peppers from the farm had just come in and the tomatoes were in prime time. Typically stuffed peppers are a cold weather recipe, but they can be an anytime recipe thanks to industrialized foods like tomatoes in cans and peppers in the produce section all year. [Serving them in summer] is one of the things that we value about cooking from the farm vs. cooking from the grocery store.”

The Hil’s Stuffed Peppers

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 medium yellow onion, diced

1 cup water

1/2 cup jasmine rice

4 bell peppers, cut in half lengthwise, seeds and stem removed

1 pound ground sirloin

1 tablespoon kosher salt

1/2 tablespoon cracked black pepper

1 (26.46-ounce) package Pomi fine diced tomatoes, divided

1 (17.6-ounce) package College Inn Tender Beef Bold Stock, divided

2 large bay leaves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a baking dish large enough to hold all the peppers.

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until onion is soft and translucent but not brown. Remove onions from skillet and set aside.

While onion is cooking, in a medium saucepan, bring water to a simmer and add rice. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until water is almost evaporated. Remove from heat and set aside.

Arrange peppers in prepared baking dish.

In a large mixing bowl, combine sirloin, reserved onions and cooked rice. Season with salt and pepper. Add 1 cup tomatoes and 1 cup stock. Mix well. Divide meat mixture between pepper halves.

In a small bowl, stir together remaining tomatoes and stock and pour over peppers. Insert bay leaves around peppers and cover baking dish with foil. Bake until peppers are tender and cooked through, at least one hour. Remove from oven. Strain off liquid and put in a medium saucepan. Keep peppers warm. Discard bay leaves. Bring liquid to a boil and reduce to a sauce consistency. Pour sauce back over peppers and serve. Serves: 4

Per serving: 475 calories (percent of calories from fat, 45), 26 grams protein, 38 grams carbohydrates, 5 grams fiber, 24 grams fat (8 grams saturated), 78 milligrams cholesterol, 2,604 milligrams sodium.

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