Our friends Danny and Lauren come over every week to watch Survivor. We are all big fans and it gives me an opportunity to test new recipes. They have been good sports about being guinea pigs, as long as I don’t try to feed Danny zucchini (he’s not a fan).
About two months ago Danny and Lauren started a very specific diet to get fit and healthy. This diet came with some guidelines which provided me a challenge to create a dinner that would meet their requirements and also satisfy all four of our appetites.
The overview of the guidelines – lean meats, lots of greens, no starches and no starchy vegetables. Corn and Potatoes were out but also Carrots and Onions. No Onions?!?! Almost everything I cook has onions! I was relieved to learn that garlic was okay and I could use onion powder. Whew!
But what was I going to make for dinner? Danny and Lauren are trying to limit the amount of beef they eat, I wasn’t in the mood for chicken, but I did have some ground turkey in the fridge and some red bell peppers. There it was . . . Turkey Stuffed Bell Peppers. I added some onion, garlic, diced tomatoes, fresh basil, fresh parsley and of course it would not be complete without parmesan cheese. The stuffed peppers were a big hit! Now every time they come over for dinner, they request the stuffed peppers.
Confession . . .
Remember when I said that Danny is not a fan of zucchini?
Well, I put some in the stuffed peppers (Shhh don’t tell him!) I don’t think he even realized they were there!
- 4 Red Bell Peppers, halved, deveined and seeded
- 1 lb Ground Turkey
- 1 tbls Onion Powder or ½ large Onion, diced
- 2 gloves garlic, minced
- 3 tbls tomato paste
- 1 medium zucchini, shredded
- 1 (14.5 oz) can Diced Tomatoes
- 2 tbls chopped Fresh Parsley
- 2 tbls chopped Fresh Basil
- 1 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
- 1 ½ - 2 cups Water or Chicken Stock
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the Halved Peppers and par-boil for 2 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Meanwhile, In a large skillet add the ground turkey and brown.
- Once the turkey meat is browned add the onion powder (or onions) and the garlic, cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes (If using diced onion, cook until onion is soft, about 4 minutes)
- Add the tomato paste and mix with the turkey to coat. Cook for about 1-2 minutes to cook the raw tomato flavor out.
- Add the zucchini and cook until it is well mixed and warmed through, approx. 1 minute
- Add the Tomatoes and cook until the liquid has reduced, approx. 4 minutes
- Add the Parsley and Basil and mix until combined
- In a 9x13 dish, lay out the peppers with the open side up. Stuff the peppers with the turkey mixture. (Depending on the size of the peppers you may have some turkey mixture left over.)
- Top each of the peppers with equal amounts of the Parmesan Cheese
- Pour water or chicken broth into the bottom of the 9x13 dish, about ¼ inch high, this will help keep the peppers moist.
- Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes
- Then change the oven setting to Broil on High and broil for 5 minutes, you want the cheese to get golden brown.
- Let cool for 5 minutes then serve immediately.