Vegetable Stuffed Eggplant

This dish is a Turkish mainstay pairing the Middle Eastern staple – eggplant – with the classic combination of peppers, onions, and tomatoes. Traditionally, you’ll find it stuffed with ground lamb and veggies, but the all-veggie version is just as juicy and delicious and oh so comforting!

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Eggplant: lowers LDL (bad) cholesterol with its chlorogenic compound, is anti-carcinogenic due to its antioxidant nasunin content, is a great source of dietary fiber, protects against colon cancer, and is a great source of vitamin A, B vitamins, folate and vitamin C.

Vegetable Stuffed Eggplant

by Aylin @ Glow Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 green peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 1 scallion, chopped
  • 1 garlic bulb, skinned and chopped
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp tomato paste
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • Fresh tomatoes and green pepper for garnish

Instructions

Place four eggplants on a baking sheet. Make a small, 2-inch long incision on the side facing up of each eggplant. This allows for steam to exit while they roast.

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Pop into the oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 30 minutes, or until the eggplant bakes down to a withered look and is soft all the way throughout.  Slice halfway through the flesh and pull open and to the side the eggplant to create a pocket for the vegetables.

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While the eggplant is cooking, cut the pepper, scallion, onion, and garlic.

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Sauté over medium heat with 1/3 cup olive oil and salt and pepper. When the onions begin to become translucent, add the tomato paste and chopped fresh tomatoes. Mix until thoroughly combined and cook until the liquid from the tomatoes has evaporated and the mixture begins to feel dry against the pan.

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Into the eggplant pockets, place the vegetable mixture evenly across all four.

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Top each with a slice of fresh tomato and green pepper.

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Bake for another 25-30 minutes in a 375 degree Fahrenheit oven. The eggplant will absorb the flavors of the vegetable mixture and the juice from the fresh tomato and pepper will seep into the entire dish.

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So flavorful, so rich, yet so so so healthy! It only looks like you’ve labored in the kitchen for hours. Wow your family or dinner guests (and yourself, of course!).

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I guarantee you’ll enjoy these, even those of you who generally don’t like eggplants.

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Bon Appetit!

xo Aylin

Leek Lava

Leeks are extremely versatile and pack enough taste to cook as simply as possible and still have a satisfying dish. For this recipe, I skipped using any oil or butter and simply baked chopped leeks with tomato puree and some garlic and onion for a savory dish with deep flavor that complements any grain you have on hand.

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Leeks: reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol, fight colon and prostate cancer with its carcinogen-fighting quercetin content, contain protective antioxidants carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin, prevent aging, keep down high blood pressure, are low in calories, are blood cleansers, and heal wounds.

Tomato Leek Lava

by Aylin @ Glow Kitchen

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Keywords: bake boil simmer lunch side dinner vegan vegetarian fat free leeks tomato puree brown rice

Ingredients (2 servings)

  • 3 leek stalks, chopped
  • 8 oz tomato puree
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2 servings cooked brown rice

Instructions

Chop the leeks, 1/2 onion, and garlic. Place onto a baking sheet and evenly pour one cup of tomato puree atop the veggies. Season with salt and pepper and pop into the oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for about 20 minutes or until leeks are cooked through.

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Serve atop brown rice or grain of choice.

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Enjoy!

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Bon Appetit!

xo Aylin

Sea Bream Breeze

Many people shy away from making fish at home, because of the taboo surrounding the ability to cook it just right. I’ve always considered it the easiest of all meats to cook (at least far easier than chicken). The hard part comes in completing the flavor profile. Sure, fish only really needs some oil or butter, salt, and lemon to be a success, but having an arsenal of various sauces to fish from is what makes having fish an exciting and more welcome member at the dinner table.

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The delicate flavors of sea bream should not be overwhelmed with some crazy sauce or overwhelming textures. The fragrant, yet neutral complement of a pea and basil sauce make for a complete fish dish that is light, tender, and creamy! I’ve also used this sauce with tilapia and scallops.

Sea Bream: lowers LDL (bad) cholesterol, is abundant in heart-healthy omega-3 essential fatty acids, improves the function of the heart, arteries and veins, raises HDL (good) cholesterol, lowers blood pressure, can reduce the risk of developing macular degeneration (leading cause of blindness) by 50 percent, reduces the accumulation of fat in the body, protects against colon, breast and prostate cancer, improves brain function, deals with symptoms of inflammation, slows down aging symptoms, and helps uplift the mood (antidepressant).

*Remember when picking out fresh fish that it shouldn’t smell “fishy”. Fresh fish smells like nothing – if it’s stinky, it’s not fresh.

Sea Bream with Pea Sauce

by Aylin

Cook Time: 8 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 sea bream fillets
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Dash of salt
  • 1 cup of canned peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Small handful of fresh basil
  • Red pepper flakes for garnish

Instructions

Coat the sea bream fillets with extra-virgin olive oil and a dash of salt. Place the sea bream skin-side down in saucepan heated to medium-high for 2 minutes. Pop the saucepan in the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 8 minutes until tender.

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For the sauce, combine the peas, basil, garlic, juice of half a lemon, salt, and pepper and process until smooth. You may need to add up to 2 tbsp of lukewarm water to get the mixture smooth rather than chunky.

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Dollop the pea sauce on each fillet and garnish with red pepper flakes. There will be leftover sauce to enjoy aside the meal.

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The perfect finish to a great day.

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Bon Appetit!

xo Aylin