I don't mind zukes in abundance - they make great refrigerator pickles, are essential in ratatouille, and are delicious pan fried as well. What I don't like are the big ones, when they start to get kind of "woody" and full of too many seeds. 6 inches is a lovely size to work with, but bigger than that, they lose their thrill for me.
Enter - Stuffed Zucchini! The perfect solution to the "hate to throw it out, the neighbors don't want any more, and I'm tired of zucchini muffins" problem.
All you need are a couple of zucchini, some fresh tomatoes, bread crumbs, garlic and herbs or a seasoning blend, some parmesan cheese and a drizzle of olive oil! Super simple and oh-so-tasty.
In case you say "I don't like zucchini," remember that this dish is about the stuffing, not the zukes. They are merely a vehicle for the glory contained within.
2 - 3 medium zucchini
4 roma tomatoes, or the equivalent of your tomato of choice, chopped
1/3 cup bread or cracker crumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 clove garlic, minced
fresh basil or parsley, chopped
salt and pepper
(or substitute a dry seasoning blend you like)
extra virgin olive oil
Preheat oven to 375 (400 if you're in a hurry like I was tonight).
Cut the zucchini lengthwise. Carefully scrape out the seeds and fleshy part, leaving about 1/4 inch thickness all around. Cut a thin slice off of each zuke bottom, so they will lay flat in the baking dish. Place in the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish.
In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, crumbs, cheese, garlic, herbs, salt and pepper. Fill each hollow of zucchini, heaping it up nicely. Drizzle the tops with a bit of olive oil.
Add water to the bottom of the baking dish, just enough to cover the bottom about 1/4 inch deep.
Bake at 375 for 35-40 minutes (400 will take less time, maybe 25-30) until the stuffing is golden on top. The zucchini should be just tender, but not at all mushy.
I turned one over so you could see the "flat" side.
Little boats, stuffed and ready to bake.
Golden and delicious. It's about the stuffing, you see.