Purple Bell Peppers


Stuffed purple bell peppers

Summer Sunshine

Purples bell peppers

“Late in the summer Lee came in off the street, carrying his big market basket.”

East of Eden, John Steinbeck


The best summer cooking revolves around as much glorious fresh sweet corn as possible. Piled high with summer vegetables our dinner salads have been graced with the addition of corn barely cooked in butter. A scoop of fragrant corn melts into the salad greens and no dressing is needed to compete with the blast of summer sunshine that adorns our dinner plates. There have been no complaints regarding my interpretation of salad for dinner. But if you must add dressing to your salad, a vinaigrette with a very light touch of vinegar leaves the sweet corn plenty of room to shine.

Purple bell peppers and corn

I went to my favorite local farm stand, The Farm to stock up on summer produce. Just outside the city limits and only five minutes from our home The Farm is a must visit if you find yourself near Salinas. I went for freshly picked corn to make cornbread and changed my mind when I found these stunning purple bell peppers. They were freshly picked. The stems were still bright green and only shriveled near the cut site. Still flush with moisture their purple skin was glossy and bright. Instead of baking cornbread I stuffed these magnificent purple bells with as much corn as possible and can still say I made dinner. We’ll have salad another day.

Thyme, faro, and corn


I almost filled the bells with all corn and just enough cheese to meld the corn together into a stuffing. I am still considering my options. Thoughts of a balanced dinner with whole grains that included a dazzling amount of corn prevailed. I paired faro with the fresh corn but any other cooked grain with a nutty flavor and texture could be substituted. Leftover grains, brown rice, quinoa or wheat berries would pair nicely with the corn and thyme.

The addition of fresh thyme is what delivers the sparkle in this meatless recipe. The thyme adds punch and sass and yet does not overwhelm the sweet corn. It’s what moves this recipe from satisfying to scrumptious. Fresh thyme is more delicate when compared to its spirited dried companion hiding in our spice cabinets. The long days of summer are not meant for the robust and compact demeanor of dried thyme. It’s vivid character is best savored in the fall and winter. Bursts of pungent dried thyme add snippets of summer to the food we enjoy in the shorter days of fall and winter.

Making stuffed peppers

1T unsalted butter or olive oil
2 cloves fresh garlic
2C fresh corn kernels (from 3 ears of corn)
4 bell peppers
1C cooked faro
1/3C ricotta cheese
1/2C grated Parmesan cheese
1/4C minced green onion
1t fresh thyme
1/4t salt
1/8t ground pepper
  1. Heat the oven to 350°. Lightly grease an oven proof dish or pan.
  2. Warm the butter in a skillet on medium heat. Add the minced garlic and sauté briefly. Add the corn and sauté just another minute, until almost warmed through and coated with butter. Set aside to cool.
  3. In a medium bowl add the cooked corn, faro, ricotta cheese, 1/3 cup of the grated Parmesan, green onions, thyme, salt and pepper. Fold together to throughly mix. Stuff the peppers and arrange them in the prepared pan. Add 1/4 cup water to the bottom of the pan. Place the cover on the pan or cover tightly with foil. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until the peppers are cooked and just begin to slump. Remove the pan from the oven and adjust the oven heat to broil. Remove the lid from the pan and sprinkle the remaining Parmesan cheese on top of the peppers. Broil until the cheese melts and becomes golden brown.

The Farm, Salinas, California

Freestanding murals

Corn at The Farm

Stuffed purple bell peppers

This entry was posted in Cooking, Grains, Vegetables, Vegetarian Main Dishes and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

45 Responses to Purple Bell Peppers

  1. Patty says:

    I haven’t seen any purple bell peppers this Summer and they are really putting a smile in my face :). We put corn on everything this time of year so I’m loving your recipe and thinking about the corn we had for dinner last night….Have a great week;)

  2. I love stuffed peppers (though I’ve never seen the purple variety, so pretty). Your meal looks like a summer feast!

  3. What lovely pictures, Deb! The peppers stuffed with faro, corn, and cheese look so appetizing. I wish I could have held that spoon and dig it in. Pinned!

    • Deb says:

      Thank you for the tasty comment! It’s such an easy recipe filled with summer goodness I hope you give it a try!

  4. Carol Sacks says:

    Deb, we were driving through Salinas on our way home from a quick work trip to SF this afternoon, when the mail with this post came in. I told my husband I wish we could stop! I’m going to surprise you next time:) I’m making this beautiful dish as soon as possible — looks marvelous. Beautiful photos, as always!

  5. Geni says:

    Those purple peppers are completely gorgeous and the filling is perfect for a summer time meal. Love that you used farro. Your photos, as usual, are stunning.

  6. Cathy says:

    Love the photos. It all looks so fresh and tasty!

  7. Wizzy says:

    Such gorgeous peppers. I have only ever seen the red, yellow or green varieties. Is there a big difference in flavour from those?

  8. Calista says:

    Oh, my – these look delicious!!!!!! I’ve never seen purple bell peppers before, but I have seen purple potatoes {which are so delicious} and purple carrots {which I’ve not tried}.

    I’ve never been to The Farm, but my son goes for field trips and always has a wonderful time!

    • Deb says:

      Thank you for the delicious comment Calista! The Farm has something for everyone and the best local produce! Their organic strawberries and corn are a burst of summer!

  9. Hmmm – I’ve never seen purple bell peppers before! Do I lack observation skills or do local groceries just don’t carry them? Lovely recipe! I love stuffed bell peppers!

    • Deb says:

      Thank you for the delicious comment Julia! I been seeing purple bell peppers at the Farmers Markets and farm stands but not at my regular grocery store.

  10. Alanna says:

    Ohhh! This looks like the perfect summer meal. Yum!

  11. These are so lovely. I love the filling, too – especially with the corn.

  12. Love the photos Deb! And this recipe – I’m heading to the Farmers Market on Tuesday to get everything I need to make these stuffed peppers for company I’m having for dinner. I know they’re going to love them.

  13. Lovely post and photos Deb. Really beautiful and such an inventive way to stuff peppers. Perfect for meatless Monday.

  14. I’m not typically a fan of bell peppers, but these purple ones are so pretty. I’d love to try them! And those flowers are so pretty too!

    • Deb says:

      Thank you for the lovely comment Laura! I’m not fond of green peppers either. The purple bells are much milder in taste and quite enjoyable.

  15. @yumivore says:

    gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! I love the thought of slicing the peppers and stuffing them, I will have to try the purple variety. The best of summer, this will make a great treat to warm with for cool summer evenings here in the Bay Area. Love it Deb!

  16. This is summer on a plate! The faro and corn stuffing is lovely for these pretty peppers. How fun to have so much great produce so nearby!

  17. Never knew purple bell peppers existed Deb. The filling is finger licking good! Meat filled red peppers abounded when I was growing up, but this is another dimension.

    • Deb says:

      Thank you for the delightful comment Paula. My mom also made stuffed green peppers with meat, but it was not a favorite of mine. The purple bells have a much milder taste than the green peppers.

  18. We’ll have salad another day…… What a way to live….on the wild side. These are a fitting dish to dine on and a worthy replacement for salad.

    • Deb says:

      If stuffing bell peppers is living on the wild side then I’ve arrived, LOL! The stuffed bells are a worthy replacement to our usual salad for dinner routine. Thank you for commenting oZ!

  19. I just saw purple bell pepper in the market this week and was so tempted to get them. Now regretting that I didn’t. Love your capture of the raw ingredients and the recipe looks delicious.

  20. Deb! This recipe is superb… Makes my mouth water!

  21. Pingback: Red Corn and Yellow Tomato Galette | East of Eden Cooking

Leave a Reply to Deb Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *