Ground Lamb, Eggplant and Chili Stuffed Roast Red Peppers

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I love roasted vegetables, Mediterranean-style. I have been fortunate enough to taste the real thing in Italy during my student years so it’s not surprising that my next best friend to my wok is my trusted oven.

To celebrate this my recipe fuses two cooking techniques: stir frying and roasting, East meeting West. The ground lamb and eggplant are stir fried and coated in delicious Chinese essential ingredients such as garlic, ginger and soy. The filling is then stuffed into the peppers and roasted until the peppers soften and release a little of their juices... the result is magic, a match made in culinary heaven. You can also make them with ground beef.

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 20-25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • 10½ oz ground lamb
  • ½ eggplant, chopped into ½ in cubes
  • 2 tablespoons shaosing rice wine or dry sherry
  • 1 tablespoon garlic chili sauce
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 2 pinches of salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 red bell peppers, tops cut across keeping stems intact, bases deseeded with a spoon
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • kalamata olives

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6.
  2. Heat a wok over high heat and add the oil. When it is smoking, add the garlic and ginger and stir fry until slightly browned. Add the ground lamb and stir fry for less than 1 minute then add the eggplant and stir fry for less than 1 minute. Add the shaosing rice wine and stir well. Season with garlic chili sauce, light soy, salt and freshly ground pepper.
  3. Spoon the mixture into the red peppers, filling each one. Place the top of the pepper back on and ensure it fits snugly, otherwise the filling will dry out. Place the peppers on a baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes until softened and slightly and browned.
  4. To serve, place the peppers on a plate with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil around it and a few kalamata olives.