Selma Avdicevic of Montclair believes in an America where people can succeed regardless of how they pray, what they wear, or who they love. She bought the ticket to that American ideal when she first came to New York as a 20 year old refugee during the Bosnian War. As legal guardian to her sister, she survived by keeping her head down and working hard to pay the bills and to earn a college degree. Selma’s determination continues and she proudly puts herself in the ranks of Nasty Women. She believes that being an American involves caring for your community.  “It’s doing what you can,” she says. Selma cooks the dishes she grew up with for refugee families, and volunteers for her PTA and local food pantries. It’s been difficult for her to reconcile with the election results but she remains resolute. “If you love something you fight for it. If you have something that you strongly believe in, you don’t walk away. You fight for it. You make it happen. And that’s what we’re going to be doing."

Bosnian Stuffed Peppers

8 large peppers
2 medium onions
2 lbs of ground meat (turkey or beef)
1 cup of arborio rice
2 cups of chicken stock or water
olive oil
sour cream (optional)

Heat the over to 350 degrees.
Saute the chopped onions. Add the spices to taste. Add and brown the meat. After it has browned, add rice and stock or water, and let it simmer on low until rice is cooked.
Clean the peppers by removing the tops and seeds. Stuff with the meat. Any leftover stuffing can be fitted between the peppers. Add half a cup of water. Cover with foil, and roast until peppers have softened, about 30 minutes. Serve with sour cream.