Prep 20 mins
Cook 1 hr
Ready, Set, Cook! Hidden Valley Contest Entry. These Italian inspired peppers are a hit with family and friends. A lovely dish when entertaining during the holiday season.
- 4 large red bell peppers, seeded, deveined, and halved lengthwise
- 1⁄2 lb ground pork
- 2 sweet Italian sausage links, casings removed
- 0.5 (1 ounce) package Hidden Valley Original Ranch Seasoning Mix
- 1 (16 ounce) bag frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 cup half-and-half cream
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1⁄2 cup parmesan cheese
- 8 slices fresh mozzarella cheese
- 1⁄4 cup macaroni noodles, cooked according to package directions to firm stage
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3⁄4 cup half-and-half cream
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1⁄2 cups parmesan cheese, grated
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- In a large skillet, cook pork and sausage, crumbling as it cooks until meat is no longer pink and beginning to brown. Drain fat. Add ½ c water, half & half, spinach, ½ package of Hidden Valley Origianl Ranch Seasoning Mix, 2 cloves of the crushed garlic, 1 tsp lemon juice and cook over medium heat 4 minutes. Toss halved tomatoes with remaining garlic clove – set aside. Make Béchamel and stir in cooked macaroni noodles.
- Add 1 Tbsp olive oil to a 13 X 9 glass baking dish and swirl to coat. Place pepper halves cut side up in baking dish and brush cavity of peppers w/Olive oil. Spoon meat mixture into the pepper halves, dividing evenly amongst the 8 halves. Top meat mixture with halved cherry tomatoes with garlic and any accumulated juices, dividing evenly between pepper halves. Spoon Béchamel/noodle mixture over tomatoes, again dividing equally. Bake at 375? F for 45 minutes. Top each stuffed pepper half with 1 slice of fresh mozzarella and continue baking until cheese melts 5-10 minutes.
- Béchamel Sauce:.
- • 1 Tbsp butter.
- • 1 Tbsp olive oil.
- • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour.
- • ¾ c half & half.
- • ½ teaspoons salt.
- • ¼ c parmesan cheese, grated.
- In a medium saucepan, heat the butter over medium-low heat until melted. Add the flour and stir until smooth. Over medium heat, cook until the mixture turns a light, golden sandy color, about 4 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat the half & half in a separate pan until just about to boil. Add the hot milk to the butter mixture, whisking continuously until very smooth. Bring to a boil. Cook 10 minutes, stirring constantly, then remove from heat. Season with salt and stir in parmesan; set aside until ready to use.