I’ve had a lot of peppers from the garden lately, and as much as I like to eat them, after a while I kind of want to shake things up a bit. Yes, there can be too much of a good thing.
So the search was on. What’s in the refrigerator or the pantry that I can use to dress these peppers up a bit, but without having to do too much. Because, you know, that would be doing too much. And I just wasn’t in the mood for all that.
I had just made some Kalamata Olive and Feta spread earlier that day. You know, just because I could. That’s when it dawned on me that I had my solution already made, I just needed to put the pieces together. So I did.
There are some tips I have for putting these together and not making a huge mess. When these peppers go into the oven, the build up of heat and steam can cause the cheese to get pushed out and into your pan. By cutting some slits in the peppers, it allows some of the steam to escape and leave your cheese filling alone. Also, by slightly elevating the open end of the peppers, it allows the cheese to melt towards the end of the pepper instead of out. If these tips don’t work anyway, no worries. Once the peppers are cooled enough to handle, you can still scoop any cheese back in and pop the olive back into the opening.
Feta & Kalamata Olive Stuffed Peppers Recipe
Preheat oven to 400 F. Lightly oil the pan. Arrange some metal utensils (like a table knife) on the pan for the peppers to rest on. Trim the stem end off of each pepper, and remove the seeds as much as possible without puncturing the sides of the peppers.
Prepare the Kalamata Olive and Feta Spread. Try not to eat it before you use it on the peppers. It’s hard, trust me. Decide for each pepper which side should lie on the pan, and cut a few small slits on what will be the opposite side (side not on the pan). This will allow the feta filling to go in more easily as air will get pushed out, and allow steam to escape as they roast in the oven. Put some of the spread into each of the peppers, you may find it easiest to use a pastry bag with a wide tip to do this. Gently tap each pepper to get the cheese further in. If you are using peppers with a larger cavity than the banana peppers I used, be sure to not overfill as the flavor of the filling will overwhelm the peppers.
Once each pepper is filled, cap the opening with a whole Kalamata olive. Lay each pepper so that the olive end is propped up on the metal utensil on the pan. Lightly brush each one with olive oil. Put in the oven and roast for about 10 to 15 minutes, or until the peppers start to become wilted and a little golden brown. You’ll hear the cheese sizzling inside, as well.
Remove the peppers from the oven. If any of them had the olive or cheese spill out, wait until they are cool enough to handle and pop the olive back in. These can be served hot from the oven, or even at room temperature (if you can wait that long!).