As a parent I often get consumed with thoughts of "getting dinner on the table".
Just that phrase makes me wince because it makes mealtime sound like a chore but I'm totally guilty of that thought process. Regardless of how much I love cooking, life is nuts, kids are hungry and sometime mealtimes can feel like a "just get it done" kind of thing. Still, it makes me sad when i find my heart is not in it. We are only human and it's easy to find yourself going through the motions to get everyone fed within a certain timeframe and sometimes we forget about making the food look pretty and appetizing. Chicken cutlets, spinach and rice (a family staple) is something I know everyone will eat so I make it a lot, but let's face it, it's a little "blah" in the visual department.
But dress it up with a pretty lemon caper sauce and you are in business.
Lately I've become obsessed with meals that are pretty and easy. I've been trying to spruce up family favorites, like chicken cutlets with easy and flavorful sauces like Lemon and Caper to switch things up a bit. Summertime is a comin' and I want a little excitement at my table. I think we all do. When I really stopped to think about it, I was just in a rut. There are plenty of meals that look gorgeous and taste great without being overly time consuming. We don't need to be five start chefs in order to add a little color or extra flavor to our plates. And one of the best ways I've found to add some brightness to our meals is by using colorful veggies in tasty ways.
Recently I made my family these amazing stuffed peppers and served them alongside a spinach salad. They were a huge hit and I honestly could not stop looking at them because they were so pretty. The golden, crunchy, parmesan breadcrumbs atop the red and green peppers and zucchini were really lovely—I mean fancy guest worth and it was so simple to throw together. Not only did it taste amazing, it was super affordable and totally meatless! They were even better the next day as leftovers for lunch. How can you beat that?
Parmesan and Sun Dried Tomato Stuffed Veggies
Sun Dried Tomato Stuffed Veggies
- 1 1/2 cups plain bread crumbs
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 4 Bell peppers, halved and seeded
- 2 Zucchini's, halved, seeded
1. Preheat Oven to 400 degrees. Spray a baking dish with foil.
2. Using a spoon, gently scrape out some of the inside of the zucchini and place cut side up onto prepared baking sheet along with bell peppers.
2. In a large bowl combine the first seven ingredients and stir until well incorporated. Distribute the mixture amongst all of the veggies. Drizzle a little extra olive oil over the top of each stuffed veggie. Cover baking dish tightly with foil and cook for 25 minutes. Remove the foil and allow vegetables to cook uncovered the rest of the time. Switch the oven the broiler setting and broil for 20-30 seconds to give the breadcrumbs a little extra crunch and a pretty golden cover.