Tag Archives: celery

Eggplant Dirty Rice

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A few weeks ago, I came across this recipe for Eggplant Dirty Rice and got really excited! I don’t know about you all, but I have never successfully cooked eggplant. This recipe seemed different though, there was no salting and draining of excess moisture or anything crazy like that…you simply dice the eggplant and cook it. Easy.IMG_2372

I’m so glad that I found this recipe, because it turned out wonderful! The mixture of black, white and red pepper was FABULOUS. And while the soy sauce may seem out of place, I can assure you it is not, it’s perfect.

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To start, you chop up your mirepoix (sub green pepper for carrot…although, carrots would be just fine):

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Then I cubed my eggplant. Since I knew I wanted to blog about this recipe, I made sure to use my handy kitchen scale to weigh my eggplant so I could tell you all exactly how much I used (it reads: 575g, if you’re curious).

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Fun fact: eggplants are also known as aubergines.

The aromas coming from the kitchen were out of this world.

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I was a little nervous about the rice. I rely on my trusty rice cooker to do all the work for any rice we eat, so I was worried it would be over/under cooked, but the liquid & timing worked out and the rice was perfect.

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The worst part about this recipe is that you have to wait 10 whole minutes from when you take it out of the oven and when you can put it on your plate. I made this after work one night last week, so it was getting late at this point, but I knew if I didn’t let it sit the rice would be ruined…so I sat, and patiently waited those 10 minutes.

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I re-heated some grilled chicken I had in the fridge and mixed that in to add a little protein to my dinner. That’s optional though, the next day I ate some leftovers for lunch (sans chicken) and was totally satisfied. This meal may take a little while to make, but the time & effort are absolutely worth it!

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Eggplant Dirty Rice

Prep time: 10 min

Cook time: 50 min

Serves: 4 hungry people

  • 4 stalks of celery, sliced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 bell peppers, diced
  • 1-1.25lb eggplant (1 large), cubed
  • 1T grapeseed oil (any neutral-flavored oil will work)
  • 1/2T marjoram
  • 1/2T dried basil
  • 1/2t black pepper
  • 1/4t white pepper
  • 1/4t red pepper (cayenne)
  • 5t minced garlic
  • 1T tomato paste
  • 1/4C soy sauce
  • 1C brown basmati rice (from Trader Joe’s)
  • 1.5C broth
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. Head oil in dutch oven over medium heat
  3. Add celery, onion and bell peppers; cover and cook for 5 min
  4. Uncover, turn the heat to medium/high and cook 5 more min
  5. Add eggplant, marjoram, basil, black pepper, white pepper and cayenne; cook for 8 min
  6. Add minced garlic and tomato paste, stir well and cook for 1 min
  7. Add soy sauce and scrape bottom of the pan to incorporate
  8. Add rice and broth, cover and bring to a boil
  9. Place dutch oven into the oven for 20 min
  10. Remove from the oven, let stand 10 min
  11. Enjoy!

Question: Do you have a kitchen scale? How often, and for what do you use it?

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Mediterranean Stuffed Peppers

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I always have high hopes for stuffed peppers. We eat with our eyes first, right? Stuffed peppers always look so amazing. But then I dig in and am like, “Why didn’t I just chop up this pepper and cook it with the filling?” Presentation. That’s why.IMG_2244

These stuffed peppers were delicious! I had only planned on making 2, but there was enough filling for 4 peppers so we ate the extra filling on the side. So, so good.

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There are many different methods out there for stuffed peppers. Some have you pre-bake the peppers so you don’t have to bake as long with the filling in. The method I use here bakes & steams the peppers, since they are wrapped tightly with foil. I think this speeds up the baking time a bit.

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The recipe I’ve written out below calls for 3/4lb (12 oz) of ground turkey. I actually used about 10 oz, since I bought the pre-packed ground turkey, which came in a 20oz container. I popped the other half of the gound turkey into the freezer, and plan to thaw it some other time to make my Taco Frittata.

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You’ll notice it looks like I used more than 2 stalks of celery; actually, I used a diced up cubanelle pepper. I wouldn’t say the recipe needed this, it’s just that it was approaching the end of it’s life in the fridge so it was use it or lose it time.

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Even though I only had 2 peppers, the amount of filling made for the recipe would easily fill 4 peppers. And for my non meat-eating readers, I would recommend subbing a can of chickpeas (drained & rinsed) for the ground turkey in this recipe!

Mediterranean Stuffed Peppers

Prep time: 15 min

Cook time: 30 min

Makes: 4 peppers

  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 3/4lb ground turkey
  • 14oz can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2T tomato paste
  • 2t dried rosemary
  • 1/2C feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/4C dry quinoa, cooked
  • 4 bell peppers, tops off & insides cleared
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees
  2. Add celery to a pan over medium heat, cook until celery starts to soften (~5min)
  3. Add ground turkey to pan, brown
  4. Add diced tomatoes, tomato pates, rosemary and quinoa to pan; mix well and cook long enough to warm through
  5. Take the pan off the heat, add feta cheese and mix well
  6. Fill bell peppers with turkey mixture and place in baking dish
  7. Cover, bake for 30 min
  8. Enjoy!

Question: Do you think presentation makes a difference for a weeknight dinner at home?