The proof is in the bell pepper...
This is bell pepper stuffed with eggplant, shrimp and ground turkey.
My MIL made this especially for me on Christmas Day. I posted a picture of it on Facebook and a friend asked for the recipe. I told her that of course there was no recipe but I would recall it the best I could, because I watched while it was prepared.
When I met my husband, the most meat I ate was Chicken tenders from Applebee's, canned Tuna and Salmon. I am sure it stressed his mother that he was bringing home a 'vegetarian' to meet the family. She had more fruit, lettuce and tomatoes than I could eat or wanted to eat during our visit.
He introduced me to different foods and by the time I visited again she had more to work with. I would get my own pot of gumbo, minus the beef sausage.
A few years ago she made the stuffed bell pepper for me. She was shocked to see me eat the entire thing. She asked,"You ate the bell pepper? Uh yeah, it's edible. I'll eat a whole baked potato too if I am the one who washed it. Anyway, I was surprised that no one else ate the entire stuffed pepper. If it was sampled, they just scooped out the "stuff".
When I tell you it was good, I mean it was so good, I ate the last one for breakfast when we were headed back home.
Not a recipe per say, but here is what she did:
Peel an eggplant, cube, sauté in butter until it is squishy then set it aside. Halve and blanch bell pepper, drain and set aside. Cook the ground turkey with bell peeper, red pepper and onion (frozen seasoning blend), season with garlic powder, cayenne, salt and pepper. Use a couple of tablespoons of the water the bell pepper was blanched in to moisten the mixture and then put the shrimp in. Mix everything then turn off after about ten minutes.
Spoon the mixture into the halved bell peppers, top with bread crumbs and bake for about ten minutes until brown on the top. The picture above is what they looked like before they went in the oven. My MIL didn't have any breadcrumbs but she was making them out of toast.
Here's the thing, this special side dish, and bread crumbs made from toast, I know she loves her daughter-in-law (even though she sat beside me and sighed that she only has three grandchildren).