Since I didn’t have to continue to worry about my cardioversion, and I didn’t have to fast, I decided to cook instead. In the past I found my self dealing with adversity or disappointment with unhealthy comfort food and a lot of whiskey. This time I took the conscious effort to keep on my life path and avoid all the harmful crutches.
I have learned well from past experiences, that in my life there is never just one drink to relax, or just one comfort treat. It may be one this time but then the door is open and the next time it is 2. Or the next time it is easier to talk myself into “needing” a drink to relax. The next time the bothersome event is a little less important. Next thing you know “the dog is barking too much and annoying me, I need a drink” or I have been good all week a drive-thru burger won’t kill me turns into “Friday is treat day”, then becomes “weekends don’t count” .
This is not a diet, this is not a punishment, this is a LIFE. On any given day I enjoy the food I eat, I do not go hungry, I do not deal with hangovers. This is not something I need a break from, or a treat for dealing with it. This time this is a mindset and a lifestyle. The demons that would like to sway my actions to the negative can fight with me all they want, this is one battle I am happy to fight and even happier to win.
Yesterdays little battle was won, and the prize….this supper yummy stuffed dinner….
3 Bell Peppers
1 Stalk of Celery
½ White Onion
6 Cloves of Garlic
1 Med Sweet Potato
1 Med Summer Squash
1 Tbsp Cumin
1 Tbsp Paprika
1 Tbsp Onion Powder
1 Tbsp Raspberry Red Wine Vinegar
1 Tsp Creamy Horseradish
1 Tsp Ground Red Pepper
1 Tsp Worcestershire Sauce (low sodium)
2 Slices Aged Swiss Cheese
Pre-heat oven to 375ºF
Wash and trim all vegetables thoroughly, peel the sweet potato and carrot. Cut the tops off the Bell pepper and clean and wash out all the seeds and veins. Save tops of peppers to use in baking. Put Peppers aside for later.
Bell peppers waiting to be stuffed
Finely chop the onion ans saute it in a skillet on med heat until translucent and slightly caramelized. While the onion is cooking, either by hand or in a food processor, chop all vegetables (excluding Bell peppers) to a very fine chop. Add prepared vegetables to the skillet with the onions. Add dry seasonings and the red wine vinegar, horseradish, and Worcestershire sauce and saute on medium until carrot and sweet potato start to get tender, stir frequently so not to burn the bottom of the skillet.
Spoon vegetable mixture into the cleaned bell peppers and place the tops on them to create a lid steaming effect for filling. Place on baking sheet and bake in oven for about 1 hour. Remove from oven and remove tops and place ¾ slice of Swiss cheese on the top of stuffed pepper. Place back in oven for about 20 min, until cheese is bubbly and browning. Remove from oven and let cool for 3-5 min and serve.
Fresh out of the oven
Inside the peppers
With just the use of herbs and spices and letting the natural flavor of the vegetables come through, you get a great amount of flavor and very little calories or sodium.
As in recipe on stuffed pepper is Approx: 136 Cal / 4g Fat / 120mg Sodium/ 22 Carbs/ 6 Fiber/ 13 Sugar / 6 Prot
This dish can be switched up with a variety of fillings, such as rice, ground beef, beans, or even added cheeses or cream cheese to give it a creamy texture. One variation I also enjoy is to use portabello mushroom chopped and sauteed. It adds a great mushroom flavor and the texture resembles ground beef. When making changes to the filling just be aware for the added calories, fat and sodium.
Happy High Flavor Healthy Heart Eating