Spiced pepper pilafs

Spiced pepper pilafs

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(6 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 50 mins

Skill level



Serves 8

This colourful vegetarian supper is superhealthy and freezable in individual portions, so you can defrost as many as you need

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Freezable
  • Vegetarian
  • Healthy
Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving



  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1cm piece ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp tomato purée
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 200g basmati rice
  • 850ml vegetable stock
  • 140g red lentils, washed and drained
  • 200g bag spinach leaves, chopped
  • handful mint leaves, chopped
  • 8 peppers

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  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan with a lid. Add the onion, garlic and ginger, then gently cook for 5 mins until softened. Stir in the tomato purée and spices, and cook for 1 min more. Add the rice, stir to coat, then pour in the stock. Bring to the boil, tip in the lentils, cover with the lid and leave to cook over a low heat for 15 mins, until the lentils and rice are cooked. Stir through the spinach and mint (see tip below, if freezing).
  2. Use a sharp knife to slice the top off each pepper. Cut out the middle stalk and scoop out any seeds. Carefully trim the bottoms slightly so they stand upright, but the filling won't fall out. Fill each pepper with the rice mix and place the lid on top. Bake or wrap tightly in cling film or freezer bags and freeze.
  3. To cook, defrost peppers completely if frozen. Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Place the peppers on a lightly greased baking tray and cook for 25-30 mins or until the peppers have softened. Serve with a green salad tossed with cucumber, herbs and a dollop of yogurt.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, January 2011

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Show comments
ldupuy's picture
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Disappointing: the filling was overcooked (like poor risotto) while the peppers themselves were undercooked after 30 min in the oven.
Would probably make the filling again as a side dish, though.

eatingbeatscooking's picture
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These looked pretty but the flavours were quite mild for my taste. Plain joghurt brought out the flavours a bit but I think I'd add a bit more spice, maybe some chilli flakes next time. Good base recipe to experiment with though.

ackers's picture

I loved this dish.i sometimes add raisins to the rice mix toand serve it with low fat yoghurt and mango chutney.freezes well too.

sheenamackenzie's picture
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This was excellent and really tasty. It took nearly 45 minutes to cook and I made some changes. I used tomato sauce instead of purée, tinned lentils, risotto rice and I added some mushrooms. I also drizzled the peppers with olive oil before baking. Will definitely be making this again.

aimzhigher's picture

This was tasty but just a little too dry. Next time I might add a tin of chopped tomatoes to make it more interesting and moist. Didn't try the freezing aspect, from past experience very wary about reheating rice in any form!