The Saucy Dressings’ chief correspondent invented this dish, and I have tweaked it a bit, replacing her yoghurt with mascarpone, and her urban, London, mint sauce, with country-fresh mint. But since one of the main flavours is, very successfully, and somewhat surprisingly, turmeric the basic character remains the same.
Recipe for Peppers stuffed with smokey mince and slathered with minty yoghurt
Serves two hungry people…could be extended to three
- ½ tsp cumin seeds
- 2 large red peppers
- 400g/14 oz mince – lamb is good
- 1 courgette
- 1 red onion
- ½ tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp bittersweet smoked paprika
- freshly ground black pepper, or even better a pinch of Urfa pepper flakes
- a few sprigs of mint
- ½ cup mascarpone
- 120ml/½ cup yoghurt – pouring rather than solid Greek.
- 1 fat clove garlic
- olive oil
- crusty bread to soak up juices
- In a large frying pan dry fry the cumin seeds.
- Peel and chop the onion, add, with some olive oil, to the pan and start to fry gently.
- Dice the courgette, add to the frying pan.
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
- Cut the peppers in half vertically and deseed, and core them. Oil an ovenproof dish, and place the peppers into it.
- When the onion has just started to turn transparent add the mince. Stir occasionally to break up and cook through.
- Add the turmeric and the paprika. Season. TASTE!
- Peel and crush the garlic with some salt. Add to the yoghurt. Snip in most of the mint (save some for garnish). Drizzle over a little olive oil, and grind over some pepper.
- When the meat is cooked through, take the pan off the heat and add the mascarpone, it will start to melt into the meat. Stir it through.
- Stuff the peppers with the meat mixture, and put in the oven for about fifteen minutes.
- Serve, garnished with the remaining mint, and together with the garlicky yoghurt sauce and some good hearty crusty bread.
I cut a big stem of my favourite miniature mint, and, as I was preparing the peppers I was aware, out of the corner of my eye, of a sudden movement. I looked and saw that I had unwittingly cut down the home of a most beautiful luminous green grasshopper, who had narrowly escaped becoming part of the stuffing. I managed to gently capture him, and returned him to the remaining bush….