I am not stretching the truth when I say I am not a great cook. I don't even consider myself a good cook...most of the time.
But every once and again I surprise even myself!
Having mastered cookies, after forgetting to put oatmeal in my oatmeal raisin cookies and having to call my mom, in tears, to ask why mine didn't look like hers always did. She had me read through the recipe with her, I continued to bake while I went over it, when we got to the last item on the list of ingredient's, and the last batch in the oven to bake, it dawned on me that I had forgotten, the most important ingredient. She taught me to laugh and try again.
I have totally given up on any kind of jam making, except for freezer jam. Strawberry and raspberry to be exact.
Yes I have a story for that too.
After conquering cookies, I got the hair brained idea, a few years later, to try my hand at peach jam.
Not a good thing.
But it did turn out to be pretty good syrup. We used it on pancakes and ice cream. for a couple of years.
Then a whole lot of years later, I got the jam making itch again. This time I thought I would make apricot jam with a nut floating in it like my Grandma used to make. Just like my mom's story had told me, how good it was and how much fun they had seeing who would get the treat of getting the nut.
I got a bushel of apricots, jam bottles, and all the necessities for the project. Called my mom, before starting for a few pointer's, then went to work.
She called me the next day to see how it turned out.
Informing her that I would never again, in this life, undertake such a project, she inquired about it. I told her it took stinking long to stand there at the sink and peel all the skins off those little things! She laughed so hard I could almost hear the tear's dripping off her chin! Upon regaining some of her composure, she choked out that you don't peel them you just cut off the bad parts and leave the rest on and blend them along with the fruit.
The skinless apricot syrup was, again, used for pancakes and ice cream, until it too was used up.
Freezer jam, I can do and it works every time. I'm sticking with that.
So you can imagine my surprise when I cook something and it works out, looks good and tastes good too.
Another confession here is that I like the taste of bell pepper's but I don't like the texture of eating them. Also I don't much care to eat them stuffed. It seems it's always just a fancy way to slip a meatloaf past unsuspecting folks.
But years and years ago.
Back to the cookie lesson day's.
I was at a group luncheon where a different kind of stuffed peppers were served, along with the recipes for them. I tried the one I liked best, at home, and they turned out good.
I put the recipe up and forgot about it until the other day.
I dug through my oldest recipe gathering folder searching for 'Ham and rice stuffed peppers'. I couldn't find it, so I googled it. And between all of them I sort of came up with my own.
I bought 8 of the biggest bell peppers I could find, in red and green, then to work I went.
I still think they are the perfect way to eat a Summer stuffed bell pepper.
I can't tell you amounts of ingrediants, but I can give you the list of them.
Precooked rice. Diced ham, greated colby jack cheese, sauted onion, celery, zuchinni (because I had a lot of them). I mixed all that up in a big bowl and stuffed 2 pepper's (Because I'm allergic to them), then I added fresh from the garden diced tomatoes to the rest. I cleaned out the seeds and white stuff from the peppers and rinsed them out and let them drain, before stuffing them. Then I put them in a cake pan (my 2 in a bread loaf pan), and filled the bottom with water, up to a little over half way up the peppers. Baked at 325 degrees for 30 minutes.
I'm not a great cook. But every once and again I surprise even myself :)
p.s. Honey ate my bell pepper's for me and let me eat just the middles ;)