Monday, April 29, 2013

Grub It Up: Turkey and Goat Cheese Stuffed Peppers

I turned the big 3 this past weekend and we spent the last several days over indulging -- everything from too much sweets for us to too much adult juice for mommy and daddy. Needless to say, we are all recovering a bit this Monday morning. So we thought we'd get our heads back in the game and share with you one of our favorite healthy dishes. FYI, it's less healthy when you eat the rest of the container of goat cheese with a spoon. But, you know, I'm only three. Impulse control is still in the works. 

Turkey and Goat Cheese Stuffed Peppers (adapted from The Gluten Free Goddess' Stuffed Peppers with Ground Turkey)

- 1-2 tbls extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 3-4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 medium red onion, diced
- 1 cup roasted corn kernels (mom pan toasts frozen kernels for a few minutes)
- 2 rounded tbls pine nuts
- 1 cup cooked brown rice
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
- 2 -3 tbls fresh chopped cilantro or parsley
- 3 large bell peppers: 1 orange, 1 yellow, 1 red, halved and seeded
- 6 tsp prepared salsa
- 6 slices fresh goat cheese

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Put a kettle of water on to boil. 

Heat a little olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and cook the ground turkey until browned. 

Add a dash more olive oil; heat; add the chopped garlic, onion, corn, and pine nuts; stir and heat through. 

Add a cup of cooked brown rice, stir and lightly mix. Add a dash more olive oil, if needed, to moisten. Add cumin and paprika. Season mixture with sea salt and pepper. Stir well to combine the flavors. Remove from heat. Add in the chopped cilantro. 

Choose a shallow baking dish that will fit the halved peppers. Stuff the halved peppers with the brown rice mixture, pressing in firmly; use as much stuffing as you can. Place the stuffed peppers in the baking dish. 

Top each pepper with a spoonful of salsa and a slice of goat cheese. 

Pour about an inch of hot boiled water into the bottom of the baking pan, around the peppers, and loosely cover the pan with a foil tent. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the peppers are fork tender. 

Now the only thing about this recipe we don't love, is that some of the yummy stuffing comes out during cooking and gets not so yummy in the water in the bottom of the baking dish. We've made other stuffed peppers where you boil the peppers in a bit of water before stuffing and cooking them. There's not a whole lot of liquid in this particular mixture, however. So they might get dried out, but we plan to try that route next time. 

Mom and dad had theirs with a simple side salad of spinach, strawberries and balsamic/olive oil drizzle. We are still deciding whether we want to be friends with salad, so we just had strawberries. 

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