4 green peppers
1/2 tsp sugar
2 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered lengthways
2 tbsp tomato puree (paste), diluted in 2/3 cup (150 ml) 1/4 pt hot water
3 tbsp vegetable oil
4 tbsp vegetable oil
1 large onion, finely sliced
375 g lean minced beef or lamb
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2/3 cup (150 ml) 1/4 pt hot water
50 g long grain or patna rice, washed and drained
50 g pine kernels, lightly toasted
50 g sultanas (golden raisins), washed and drained
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 190°C, 375°F, Gas Mark 5.
2. If the peppers are rather thick, drop them briefly in boiling water for 2-3 minutes then remove and drain them. Cut a slice off the top of each tomato and pepper and reserve. De-seed the peppers. Scoop out most of the tomato flesh with a 1 tsp, chop and reserve for adding to the stuffing. Invert the tomatoes on to a plate to drain but reserve their juices for adding to the stuffing. Sprinkle a little sugar into each tomato.
3. To make the stuffing, first heat the vegetable oil and brown the onion. Add the meat and cinnamon and fry together, breaking up any lumps. Add the hot water, seasoning and the chopped tomato flesh and any juices; cover and cook for 20 minutes. Add the rest of the stuffing ingredients, mix well and cook for 3 more minutes.
4. Arrange the tomatoes and peppers upright in a small baking dish, filling any gaps in between them with the potato quarters which will help to keep the stuffed vegetables upright and will make a delicious addition to the meal at the end.
5. Fill the vegetables with the stuffing mixture, leaving a little room for expansion and seal with the reserved tops. Pour the diluted tomato puree and the remaining oil all over, season and cook for 1 hour 10 minutes, basting occasionally. Add a few large spoons of water, if needed.
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