It’s summer squash time.
Whether you call them zucchini, courgette or yellow squash they’re all summer squash – and all the same in my opinion.
I’ve seen lots of recipes and more than a few comments that more recipes are needed…. Not by the same people (I assume).
I thought I would throw a few of my own into the mix.
I’ve also seen a few posts with rather complicated instructions on how to scoop out the interior (melon baller?) and prep the resulting shell (parboil?) to make stuffed zucchini.
I thought I would explain how to do it the easy way.
Stuffed Zucchini (Courgette) with Beef, Basil and Quinoa
Total time: 45 minutes
- 2 zucchini or summer squash (courgette), 7″ each (17cm)
- 5oz (150gr) ground beef
- 2 large red tomatoes, roughly chopped
- 1 large green tomato, roughly chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 small can (4oz, 120gr) green chilies, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- large bunch of basil, big leaves torn, small left whole
- 1 tbs olive oil
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp cumin
- 1/3 cup (2.4oz, 65gr) quinoa
- 2/3 cup (5oz, 150ml) beef stock
- The zucchini:
- Cut zucchini in half the long way.
- The interior is soft – just take a spoon, draw a line down the center pressing lightly, then repeat the line, pressing harder each time, scraping out the seeds and flesh and forming long boat-like shells. Leave 1/4″ (.6cm) at either end to hold in the filling.
- Put them in a baking dish, single layer, cover with foil and bake, 400F (200C), for 15 minutes while you make the filling.
- Remove and keep covered until ready to fill.
- The filling:
- Cook quinoa in stock until done, about 15 minutes.
- Heat olive oil in nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add onion, pepper and garlic, sauté until tender, about 5 minutes.
- Add meat to skillet and cook, breaking it up as it browns.
- Add red tomatoes, spices to skillet and cook until tender 5 minutes.
- Stir in basil, quinoa and set aside.
- The finish:
- Spoon the filling into the zucchini. Any filling that doesn’t fit, just keep warm and serve on the side.
- Cover zucchini with foil and bake for 15 minutes.
- While zucchini bakes heat green tomato and green chilies in a saucepan until tomatoes are tender. Keep warm until needed.
- Serve squash with tomato / chili sauce on the side.
No, I didn’t forget the cheese…. Add it if you like, but I decided to enjoy it as is.
The one and only way to keep from having giant summer squash / zucchini in your garden is to pick them all when they are small.
Besides, Baby Zucchini are equally fun to stuff and have as a starter or side dish.
These reminded me of Banana Splits when I was making them.
Of course, when they get a bit bigger you can slice the the long way and do other fun stuff….
As for a simple vegetable side dish….
Simple Fried Zucchini is one of our favorites