I have long history of picking out ugly eye glasses for myself.
Lots of people have bad eyesight, but I have terrible taste to match.
My first pair at age 10 was a very unfortunate purple and black marbled number. There was a cat-eyed pair that looked straight-up ridiculous and there’s my current pair that are too large on my abnormally small head. They’re so big that they slipped off my face at an airport drop-off area, scratching the entire left lens on the pavement.
If you want to see me at my most uncoordinated watch me either a.) try to play a team sport or b.) wrangle my luggage while blindly groping for my glasses on the ground in front of a taxi line. That’s real life.
Needless to say, I pretty much just wear contacts all the time.
But it’s time for a new pair. And despite all evidence to the contrary, I’ve convinced myself that this’ll be the time when I get it right. I will love my glasses and they’ll love my small face and we’ll look stylish and smart together. Forever.
How will she relate regrettable eyewear choices to quinoa stuffed red peppers? I hear you thinking, slightly annoyed.
Well! as it turns out, I never seem to have a share-worthy stuffed pepper for you. And the truth is I really enjoy a stuffed vegetable. It’s a purposeful container – like an ice cream cone…but not. (Edible cups = saving the world!)
But this time, I’m getting it right. This time I’m getting a wearable pair of glasses and making a photograph-worthy stuffed pepper. Getting. things. done. Vegetables and quinoa and cheese baked in a vegetable. Check it.
Stuffed Peppers with Quinoa and Corn (serves 2)
– 1 red pepper (or color of your choice), sliced in half
– olive oil
– 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
– 1/2 cup corn kernels ( you can use fresh, removed from the cob or frozen and thawed)
– 1/2 teaspoon cumin
– 1/2 teaspoon paprika
– 2 green onions, thinly sliced
– 1/4 cup chopped cilantro/coriander
– 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese, plus more for sprinkling
– 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds
– salt & pepper
Give it a protein boost: Add a 1/2 cup of cooked chick peas, white beans or black beans into the quinoa mix.
Make it meaty: Add some small browned cubes of chorizo into the quinoa mix.
To cook quinoa: Rinse 1/2 cup of quinoa in a mesh colander. Place 1/2 cup quinoa and 1 cup water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes, covered. Remove from heat and let stand (covered) for 5-10 minutes. Uncover, fluff with a fork and serve.
Heat oven to 400 F/205 C.
Place the red pepper halves open side down on an oiled baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, flip and bake another 5 minutes until just tender.
In the meantime, heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan over a medium high heat. Add corn, cumin, paprika and season with a little salt and pepper and stir to combine. Cook, stirring only once or twice, for 5 minutes, until the corn to get golden in places.
Mix together cooked quinoa, corn, green onions, cilantro, sunflower seeds and cheddar. Spoon this mixture into the cooked red peppers until they are full. Sprinkle with a little more cheddar and bake for about 5-10 minutes until the cheese is melted and the filling with heated through.