I’m not sure if I’ve brought this up on the blog before, but I eat a pescatarian diet, while Dave is a carnivore at heart – he eats chicken like nobodies business. I’m lucky enough that he will try most of the meals I prepare, but anytime we can easily make something both of us can enjoy without having to alter the recipe too much, is a win in my book!
We started the day out walking around the farmers market in Davidson, NC. I forgot how much I love a good small town. What a great environment! There were a ton of local organic farmers. We got there around 11, and the farmers were sold out some of the more popular vegetables. Good for them I guess (sad for SAM!).
We stopped at one of the healthy markets on the way back, and I was able to load up on pumpkin pie spice, as I can’t seem to get my hands on it at Trader Joes (although I did get my hands on some pumpkin spiced pumpkin seeds – holy addicting!). I’m thinking more Pumpkin Spiced Granola is in my future.
When we got home I quickly got started on my mom’s cake. I decided to wing it and just started playing around in the kitchen! I decided to make a chocolate cake with dark chocolate cream in the center and then iced with my peanut butter frosting. Pretty healthy for sure! We ended up having a crazy day and decided that Sunday would be a better cake day, so as soon as I taste this baby, I’ll be sure to give you a verdict and share the recipe if it was good! Fingers crossed – send me some good vibes please!
The day just flew by and I promised Dave I’d make him stuffed peppers if he would do a photo shoot with me for this weeks workouts! He would have done it without being bribed, but I like to sweeten the pot when I can! So peppers it was. We stopped at the grocery store and picked up a few extra peppers, some brown rice wild rice mix and ground turkey for Dave.
I am going to list the ingredients for 7-8 peppers, you can either make these with ground turkey or ½ cup of french green lentils (dry).
These Stuffed Peppers will be a hit with the family. Make them with your favorite protein (turkey or lentils!)
- 1 lb. ground turkey or ½ cup French Green Lentils
- 7-8 bell peppers I prefer the red, yellow and orange
- 1 cup brown rice or wild rice
- 2-3 carrots chopped
- 1 red or white onion chopped
- 2-3 cloves garlic minced
- 2-3 stalks celery
- 1 package cherry tomatoes
- Optional 1-2 cups butternut squash cooked and cubed
- 1 bunch of kale stripped from stalks, torn into pieces
- 1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes
- 1 15 oz can of diced tomatoes
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tbs. Italian seasoning
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. While oven is preheating, put tomatoes in a dish that has been sprayed lightly with cooking spary, lightly salt and pepper tomatoes, and roast 15 minutes.
- While tomatoes are roasting, put 1 cup of rice and 2 cups of water on over medium heat. Bring to a boil and then turn down to low and add a cover. Salt and pepper to taste. I used about ¼ tsp. salt and 6 grinds of pepper. Cook for the time recommended on the package or about 20-30 minutes if you are unsure.
- Cut tops off of peppers, clean out seeds and membrane, and add to a baking dish cut side down so steam can get trapped in the peppers. Make sure the dish you are using will hold the peppers together and has high sides so that the peppers can later soak in a tomato bath. As soon as the tomatoes are out of the oven, put the peppers in the oven, 10 minutes with top on the baking vessel to steam.
- If using lentils, start the lentils. I put 1 cup lentils, 2 cups water, a minced garlic clove and some salt in a pot over medium heat. Once boiling, turn down to low and cook 15-20 minutes. French Green Lentils don’t get as mushy when you cook them as the traditional brown lentils, so overcooking wasn’t as much of an issue with these.
- Once lentils are in water, start cooking the onion, garlic, carrot and celery over medium heat in a lightly sprayed sauté pan with ½ tsp. salt and few grinds of pepper. Sauté until veggies are tender, 8-10 minutes. In the last 3 minutes of cooking, add the kale and the juice of one lemon and about 4 tablespoons of water. Cover the pan and allow the kale to wilt. Add the roasted tomatoes to the veggie mixture and allow to cool.
- If using ground turkey, start the turkey once the veggies are cooking. Add a few dashes of season salt and cook until no longer pink (8-10 minutes over medium heat).
- In a large pan, add the diced tomatoes (both cans), 2-3 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, a bay leaf, Italian seasoning, ½ to 1 tsp. salt and 10 grinds of black pepper. I tried to keep this pretty basic but feel free to add whatever you like. Also if you are short on time, please feel free to just have a jar of your favorite tomato sauce on hand for this. Cook over medium low heat until the flavors have had time to come together, about 10 minutes.
- As ingredients begin to be finished, take off the heat to cool. Once all ingredients are done, combine rice, lentils or turkey, and veggie mixture in a large bowl or pot and stir until ingredients are distributed equally. The tomato sauce will go outside of the peppers so don’t add it to this mix.
- Turn peppers right side up, and fill with a large soup spoon, making sure to really press down and get the peppers stuffed full!
- Carefully add the tomato mixture to the sides of the peppers, making sure to get between the peppers as well. You may need to add a little water to ensure the liquid is up to at least two thirds of the peppers. Cover dish with lid or foil and bake at 400 degrees F for 20 minutes.
- Carefully remove and uncover. Allow to cool 5 minutes.
- Leftovers should be stored in an airtight container for 3 days.
What About You?
- Go to any good farmers markets lately!