Creamed Fresh Corn–Stuffed Red Bell Peppers, The Lucky Santangelo Cookbook by Jackie Collins
Yield: 4 servings, very good reheated
These make a terrific late-summer entrée, when peppers and corn peak in flavor.
Corn kernels are best removed with a sharp knife: Hold the cob straight up in a bowl that fits into your sink, and cut with an even, downward sawing motion. Then scrape the cob back and forth with the back of the knife to get out the pulp and milk.
If this is to be an entrée, serve it with a side of garlic bread and caprese: a row of tomato and buffalo mozzarella slices garnished with basil and drizzled with superb extra-virgin olive oil.
Prep all of the ingredients before commencing.
¼ pound slab bacon, or pancetta sliced into ¼-inch dice (frozen briefly for easier slicing) 1 medium-large yellow onion, 3 large ears of fresh corn, kernels removed 10 to 12 pimiento-stuffed green olives, thinly sliced crosswise 1 large red bell pepper, roasted or broiled, chopped, and tossed with the corn 4 meaty red bell peppers, shaped to stand comfortably 1 tablespoon Calvados 2 large egg yolks ½ cup heavy cream Freshly grated nutmeg (about ½ teaspoon) 1½ cups grated truffled sheep’s milk cheese, or soft goat cheese, such as chèvre
In a medium saucepan, cook the diced bacon until just crisp over medium heat. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to the corn bowl and pour out all but 2 tablespoons of the drippings. Through peeled the large holes of a box grater, grate in most of the onion and cook over medium heat, stirring every so often, for 3 to 4 minutes. De- glaze the pan with the Calvados. Stir in the corn kernels and bacon, chopped olives, roasted bell pepper, and bacon. Add a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper, and cook for 4 minutes, stirring often. Then keep mixture just at the simmer.
Slice the tops off the raw bell peppers, scoop out the seeds, and trim off any membranes from the inner walls. Rinse and place them in an 8-inch Pyrex glass baking dish or pie plate. Seal tightly with plastic wrap, and microwave on high for 3 to 5 minutes, or until fairly tender, but not mushy. (Microwave ovens vary widely in power from 750 to 1200 watts; consult the manual that accompanied your oven for timing recommendations.) Remove the plastic wrap, drain any collected fluid from inside and around the peppers, and keep them warm. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, beat the egg yolks with a fork until light yellow, then blend in the cream. Pour into the hot corn-bacon mixture, and stir over low heat for a few minutes to thicken. Stir in the nutmeg.
Fill the peppers with the hot mixture, divide the grated cheese over the top of each ﬁlled pepper, and run the peppers under the broiler until the cheese bubbles and the tops of the peppers are starting to blacken. Serve at once.