Couscous Stuffed Peppers

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I make stuffed peppers often, especially during the winter, and have always used quinoa instead of the more traditional rice. But recently I replaced the quinoa with couscous and think we have a new favorite.  I also added a can of chickpeas and some mint, so this new recipe has an almost-Morrocan flavor.

As healthy as quinoa is, couscous – tiny pearls of pasta that look like quinoa – tastes so much better.

– Catherine

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Couscous Stuffed Peppers

1 lb ground meat (I used ground chicken, but beef or turkey would be just as good.)

2 cups cooked couscous

2 cups crushed tomatoes or good (no sugar, just real ingredients) jarred marinara sauce

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed

2 Tbsp chopped fresh mint

1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley

1/2 cup feta cheese

1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted in a dry skillet until fragrant

Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat.  Sauté onion until soft, about three minutes.  Add garlic and sauté for one minute more, until fragrant.  Add chicken and cook until no pink remains, about 8 minutes.  Add Worcestershire sauce, crushed tomatoes (or marinara sauce), chickpeas and couscous and combine until heated throughout.  When the mixture is hot, add most of the herbs and half of the feta cheese and spoon into hollowed-out peppers in an oven-safe dish.  Top with the remaining herbs, feta and pine nuts and bake at 375° for 30-45 minutes, or until the tops begin to brown.

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