After months of cooking abstinence with the arrival of little Nico, I felt revived on Saturday night when I had a good reason to cook again for our Sunday Thanksgiving celebration. Since we are all busy preparing new dishes for the holidays I thought I would share another recipe with you.

This recipe comes from new American friends Kathy and Keith who are not only wonderful people but regular visitors in Langhe. This is how I met them when they visited my winery in Barolo. We hit it off even more when they told me they were owners of a winery back home called Stark. It felt so good to reminisce about our wine regions together. Since then, we have kept in touch and after Kathy read my post on our abundance of red peppers, she was so kind to give me another idea on how to use them (alla California style!) Let me know what you think!
photo courtesy of www.loveandlemons.com (I imagine it to look something like this!)
Red Peppers with Couscous and Yoghurt Herb Sauce
2-3 medium to large ripe peppers
200g pearl couscous or barley
6 spring onions (scallions)
olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp. ground paprika
grated zest of 1/2 lemon
large handful of chopped mint leaves
large handful chopped coriander (cilantro)
75g toasted pine nuts
For the Yoghurt Sauce
200g plain, thick yoghurt
handful each of chopped coriander and mint
a pinch of paprika
To make the stuffing, cook the couscous or barley for about 15 minutes in plenty of well-salted boiling water until tender.  Drain and toss lightly with a little olive oil to stop the grains sticking together.
Meanwhile, finely chop the spring onions, discarding only the very darkest of the green shoots, and let them soften in a glug or two of olive oil over a moderate heat.  Just before they start to colour, add the garlic, paprika and grated lemon zest (reserve the juice).  Stir in the chopped herbs and the toasted pine nuts.  When all is fragrant and starting to darken a little in colour, stir in the drained couscous or barley and the lemon juice.  Season carefully.
Set the oven at 180C/gas mark 4/350F.  Cut the peppers in half lengthwise, pull out the seeds and cores, and lay cut side up in a baking tin.  Pile the filling into the peppers, drizzle over a little more olive oil, and cover loosely with foil.  Bake for about 45 minutes until sizzling.
Mix the thick yoghurt with the coriander, mint, paprika and some ground black pepper (Note:  I thin the yoghurt with a little milk to make it more “drizzleable.”)
Serve the peppers hot, with a little of the yoghurt sauce drizzled over.
Buon appetito!
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