When I was younger I hated bell peppers…especially cooked. Now, I can’t get enough! I love them in my tuna, salads, omelets, etc. As you probably already know, bell peppers come in a variety of colors. These different colors vary depending on the type of plant, as well as the level of ripeness. As I’m learning (with my garden), red bell peppers are matured green bell peppers and as the pepper matures, it becomes sweeter. This means that the different color bell peppers may produce different tastes.
Bell peppers are a very nutritious food. While most people think of oranges for vitamin C, many don’t realize that bell peppers are chocked full of this vitamin! One half cup of chopped green bell peppers provides 60% of the Daily Value of vitamin C. What’s even more impressive is that the same amount of yellow or red bell peppers provides about 230% of the Daily Value! Keep that in mind if you or your child has low iron and want to increase absorption.
In addition, red bell peppers are also a great source of vitamin A. Eating one half cup provides 45% of the Daily Value for this antioxidant.
As evidenced by my garden (which is still producing ), bell peppers are in season during the summer. This means that they’re more affordable and tastier. I’m hoping that it can continue to produce much more so that I can freeze some for when they’re not in season.
Selection: Peppers should be smooth with no wrinkles, stem should be nice and green. Avoid peppers with black spots or holes.
Storage: Unwashed bell peppers can be stored in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for about a week. Green ones tend to stay fresh longer than yellow or red bell peppers.
Here’s a great, colorful, and quick recipe for bell peppers that you can try. It’s slightly adapted from the Pasta Sausage Supper at All Recipes.
1 lb (16oz) whole wheat penne pasta
1 lb lean sausage
1 green bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
1 Tbsp olive oil
Spaghetti Sauce (~1 jar or the equivalent homemade)
Grated parmesan cheese (optional)
Cook pasta according to package directions. Slice the bell peppers and the onions into strips. Dice sausage. Heat oil in large skillet, and add vegetables.
Add pasta to plates and top with spaghetti sauce and veggies. Top with parmesan cheese if desired We loved it!
Do you like bell peppers? What about your child? What are some of your favorite bell pepper dishes?
Have a great weekend!