Barley-Stuffed Peppers

    PREP: 25 minutes BAKE: 22 minutes OVEN: 350°F MAKES 4 servings

    • 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
    • 1 cup water
    • 2⁄3 cup quick-cooking barley
    • 1⁄2 of a vegetable bouillon cube
    • 2 large red, yellow, and/or green sweet peppers
    • 1 egg, lightly beaten
    • 3⁄4 cup chopped, seeded, and peeled tomato (1 large)
    • 3⁄4 cup shredded reduced-fat mozzarella cheese
    • 1⁄2 cup shredded zucchini
    • 1⁄3 cup soft bread crumbs
    • 1 tablespoon snipped fresh basil or 1⁄2 teaspoon dried basil, crushed
    • 1 teaspoon snipped fresh rosemary or 1⁄8 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
    • 1⁄4 teaspoon onion salt
    • Several dashes bottled hot pepper sauce

    1. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a medium saucepan combine mushrooms, the water, barley, and bouillon cube. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 12 to 15 minutes or until barley is tender; drain.
    2. Meanwhile, halve sweet peppers lengthwise; remove seeds and membranes. If desired, precook sweet peppers in boiling water for 3 minutes. Place peppers, cut sides down, on paper towels to drain.
    3. In a medium bowl combine egg, tomato, 1⁄2 cup of the cheese, the zucchini, bread crumbs, basil, rosemary, onion salt, and hot pepper sauce. Stir in cooked barley mixture. Place peppers, cut sides up, in an ungreased 2-quart rectangular baking dish. Spoon barley mixture into peppers.
    4. Bake, covered, for 20 to 25 minutes or until barley mixture is heated through. Sprinkle with the remaining 1⁄4 cup cheese. Bake, uncovered, about 2 minutes more or until cheese melts.

    PER SERVING: 231 cal., 5 g total fat (3 g sat. fat), 65 mg chol., 514 mg sodium, 33 g carb., 4 g fiber, 13 g pro.


    Wild rice makes a tasty, healthful, and colorful side dish. Cut the cost of the pricey marsh grass by mixing it with brown or white rice.