This recipe is adopted from America’s Test Kitchen Slow Cooker Revolution cookbook which is available for purchase in the America’s Test Kitchen bookstore for under $20.
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 4-6 hours
Serves: 4-5 people, approximate 1 bell pepper per person
1. Combine 1 minced onion, 6 minced garlic gloves, 1 T EVOO, 1 T tomato paste, & 1/4 t red pepper flakes in a bowl. Microwave stirring occasionally for 5 minutes until onion is softened.
2. Cut top 1/2 inch off 4-5 bell peppers (red, yellow, & orange only). Chop pepper tops fine but discard stems. Remove core, ribs, and seeds. Rinse and dry peppers thoroughly.
3. Tear 1 slice high-quality white sandwich bread into 8 pieces. Place in a large bowl with 1/4 cup whole milk. Mash bread and milk into a paste with fork or bean masher. Stir in onion mixture from step 1 and chopped pepper tops from step 2.
4. Add 1 small zucchini chopped (1/4 inch pieces), 1lb. hot Italian sausage casings removed, 3 oz. grated Monterey Jack cheese, 3/4 cups cooked rice (you can substitute ready rice if you’re short on time), 1/4 cup Parmesan, 1 t salt, & 1/2 t pepper. Mix with your hands.
5. Pack mixture into cored bell peppers with hands. It’s okay if the mixture is slightly overflowing the top of the pepper, the mixture will condense during cooking. Pour 1/3 cup water into slow cooker. Place stuffed peppers in slow cooker. Lean them against each other and the walls of the slow cooker so they stand upright. Cover and cook 4-6 hours on low.
6. Use a slotted spoon to lift peppers out of slow cooker. Tongs will be helpful in maneuvering the tender peppers into a serving dish. Sprinkle with minced basil and additional Parmesan for garnish.