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Low Fat Turkey-Stuffed Eggplant and Zucchini

So, how many food bloggers have instances in which their family members scarf down their recipes before the bloggers can take the photos of the food? It happens routinely at my house. Okay, not so much the eating, but the plate-serving and sitting at the table poised and ready (wait, that fork has something suspiciously clinging to it...). My husband was hungry, the food was set out and looked ready for dinner, a spatula and plates were nearby...most important, I didn't tell anyone not/not to eat anything. Oh, well. It was good! In this case, the recipe was for zucchini and eggplant stuffed with ground turkey. The dish is cheap, easy, and, as evidenced below, quite tasty--kind of like eggplant Parmesan with no frying. The stuffed zucchini and eggplant are great served alone or with pasta. I like them with savory spinach muffins on the side.

Low Fat Turkey-Stuffed Eggplant and Zucchini

Low Fat Turkey-Stuffed Eggplant and Zucchini -- Serves 4

1 medium eggplant, washed, trimmed, and cut in half

2 medium zucchini, washed, trimmed, and cut in half

8-10 ounces of low-fat ground turkey (93 percent)

1 medium onion, chopped

1 14-15 ounce can of diced tomatoes (preferably with basil, oregano, and onion)

2 tablespoons of tomato paste

1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder

1 teaspoon of Italian herbs

1 teaspoon of dried basil

1/4 teaspoon of pepper

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1 egg

11/4 cup of dried seasoned bread crumbs (I use seasoned Panko from Costco), divided

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese, divided

1/2 - 1 cup of shredded Italian blend cheese

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and coat a large, microwave-safe casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray. Scoop out the middle part of the eggplant (use a knife and/or a spoon), leaving a shell about 1/2 - 1-inch thick. Chop the pulp into small pieces and put it in a microwave-safe bowl. Scoop out the inside of the zucchini, leaving a shell about 1/2-inch thick. Add the zucchini pulp to the bowl. Add the chopped onion to the bowl and microwave the vegetables for a couple of minutes or until they soften. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic powder, Italian herbs, basil, pepper, salt, and egg and mix everything well. Stir in one cup of the dried bread crumbs and the Parmesan cheese until everything is thoroughly combined. Arrange the eggplant and zucchini in the prepared casserole dish and microwave them for a couple of minutes or until they've softened a little. Stuff the meat mixture into the cavities of the eggplant and zucchini. Sprinkle the remaining bread crumbs and then the remaining Parmesan cheese on top of the stuffed vegetables and bake the stuffed zucchini and eggplant for 30-45 minutes or until cooked through and browned on top. Sprinkle on the Italian blend cheese and return the casserole dish to the oven for a few minutes until the cheese melts. Let the stuffed vegetables stand for 5 minutes before serving them.

Low Fat Turkey-Stuffed Eggplant and Zucchini

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