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Tomato and Pepper Stew/Soup

1 quart water, as needed
1 12 cups water
1 (29 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes (undrained)
4 cups long-grain rice, cooked (not minute rice or quick cooking rice.I use black and white rice mixed)
4 cups bell peppers, chopped into 1 inch pieces.** (green and red)
1 sweet onion, chopped
2 teaspoons dried basil (or handful of chopped fresh basil if available)
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons fresh ground pepper
2 tablespoons brown sugar (optional)


1. Put rice in small pot and begin cooking by package directions, (1cup uncooked=4cups cooked). 2. In 6-quart pot combine tomatoes and tomato sauce and simmer. 3. In small fry pan saute chopped onions in about 1/4 cup of oil until translucent. 4. While rice and onions are cooking chop peppers and add to tomato pot. 5. Add remaining ingredients to tomato pot with cooked rice and onions (with oil from pan) and 1 1/2 cups water to make 'stew' consistency. 6. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes or until tender. Add additional water as needed to maintain desired thickness. (A cover is optional, if too thin leave cover off and allow to thicken. ). *Start with 1 1/2 cups water and add more to achieve consistency you desire. **For variety and spice replace 1/2 cup bell peppers with 1/2 cup chopped (medium hot) yellow peppers, this is still mild enough for most palates. Or to create a not so 'family friendly' version replace yellow peppers with your favorite variety of hot peppers to challenge your friends. ***Brown sugar can reduce the acid but does add a slightly sweet taste to the stew/soup.

Source: www.food.com