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Wild Rice Risotto and Pumpkin Seed Pepper Pockets


  • 3 Tbsp olive oil

  • 1/2 cup wild rice

  • 3 to 4 cups chicken stock

  • ½ cup minced onion

  • ¼ cup finely diced celery

  • ¼ cup finely diced carrot

  • ½ cup Arborio rice

  • ¼ cup white wine

  • 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme

  • 1 tsp finely chopped fresh sage

  • 2 Tbsp chopped dried cranberries

  • 2 Tbsp unsalted roasted pumpkin seeds

  • 2/3 cup grated Asiago cheese

  • salt and pepper

  • 12 to 16 mini bell peppers


  • 1.

    Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a medium saucepot over medium heat. Add wild rice and sauté until a nutty aroma eminates, about 2 minutes. Add 1 ½ cups chicken stock, bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to low, loosely cover and simmer until rice is tender (and grains curl open), about 40 minutes. If stock is absorbed, add ½ cup more.

  • 2.

    Remove cooked rice from pot and add remaining 2 Tbsp oil. Add onion celery and carrot and sauté until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add Arborio rice and stir to coat, 1 minute. Add wine and stir until absorbed. Add 1 cup chicken stock and stir until absorbed (you can reduce heat to low and then you can walk away from the pot for a minute or 2). Add thyme and sage and you add the final bit of stock (when rice is cooked but still al dente). Stir in cranberries, pumpkin seeds and reserved wild rice. Stir in Asiago until melted and season to taste. Let risotto cool slightly.

  • 3.

    Preheat oven to 375F (190C). Cut tops out of mini bell peppers (keeping) and spoon out seeds. Spoon risotto into each mini pepper until heaping and top with cap. Bake for 15 minutes, just to soften pepper, then serve.

  • 4.

    Mini peppers can be served as hors d’oeuvres or snacks, or filling makes 4 large peppers for a great side dish.

  • 5.

    Serve with warm tomato sauce as a dip.

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