I reworked the stuffed pepper recipe for the cookbook, and this was the result. I've posted the written recipe below the photo, and I highly encourage you to try it out. Enjoy!
Stuffed Bell Peppers
For the sauce:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 cup beef broth
2 cups prepared marinara sauce, or other tomato sauce
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, optional
For the peppers:
1 pound lean ground beef
1/2 pound sweet Italian pork sausage, casings removed
2 cups cooked rice
1 cup finely grated "real" Parmesan cheese (Parmigiano Reggiano)
1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
4 cloves garlic, minced very fine
1 can 10-oz diced tomatoes
2 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
pinch of cayenne
4 large red bell peppers
Add the olive oil to a saucepan, and lightly brown the onions with a large pinch of salt over medium-high heat. Remove half and reserve for the stuffing. Stir in the rest of the sauce ingredients and bring to a simmer. Pour the sauce into the bottom of a large deep casserole dish.
Add all the filling ingredients to a mixing bowl, along with the reserved onions, and stir with a fork, or your hands, until the mixture is combined. Tip: you can cook a small piece of the filling to test the seasoning.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Cut the bell peppers in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to remove the stem, seeds and white membrane from each pepper. Place the bell peppers in the casserole dish, and fill each pepper with the stuffing. A little additional cheese can be grated over the top if desired.
Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake uncovered for another 20-30 minutes, or until the peppers are very tender. Exact cooking time will depend on size, shape and thickness of the peppers. Best to let rest for 10 minutes before serving. Serve with the sauce spooned over the top.