Warm Stuffed Zucchini Cups; the festival dinner

Garrison Keillor, of public radio fame, once asked:   “Why do the inhabitants of Lake Wobegon lock their cars in the month of August?
So their neighbors won’t leave bags of zucchini on the back seat.”

To be honest, I have never been cursed with excess zucchini or summer squash.

Yes, I have 4 plants of various colors, white, yellow, striped and dark green, but I monitor them closely and don’t let any get huge.

I also make a lot of soup for winter which goes in the freezer, and I make sweet, tea breads. I particularly like the Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread and Lemon Zucchini Bread which I make with yellow squash.

By the way…. zucchini is the Italian word for summer squash – all summer squash regardless of color. Courgette is the French word for summer squash. The British use the word courgette for all summer squash. Only in the U.S. are the green-striped squash not acknowledged as squash but only as zucchini….. Recipes will say that one can substitute summer squash for zucchini.

I digress…..

Even though I have never gone in search of open cars to share my squashes, I do tend to start getting creative by this time of summer.

This is a great idea for the one ‘that got away’ – was buried under a leaf and by the time you find it it’s huge.

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Stuffed Zucchini Cups

Little cups are formed by scooping the seeds out of thick slices, but leaving a base to hold the stuffing. A bit of cheese is added for the last few minutes, to just melt and bubble around the edges. Healthy and pretty! These would be great for a party, as all the work could be done ahead, and then baked at the last minute. 
We had them as a first course on the weekend.

  • Author: Katie Zeller
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: First Course
  • Cuisine: International

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 zucchini or other summer squash, about 2-1/2 inches (7cm) in diameter and at least 7 inches (18cm) long
  • 1 medium tomato
  • 34 green onions
  • 1.5 oz (45gr) cheese
  • 2 tbs fresh snipped basil leaves
  • olive oil
  • Greek or other black olives, optional 

Instructions

  • Cut the squash into six 1 inch (2.5cm) rounds. 
  • Using a teaspoon scoop out the center of each round leaving 1/4 inch (.6cm) on sides and bottom. 
  • Dip the bottom of each zucchini cup into oil and put on a baking sheet.
  • Clean and finely slice the green onions. You will want about 2 (heaped) tsp of slices. 
  • Divide and put into each zucchini cup. 
  • Finely chop the tomato and put on top of the onions, mounding it up a bit to get it all in. 
  • Bake in 400F (200C) oven for 25 minutes. 
  • While they bake slice the cheese into small thin rectangles, just to makes it easier to work with. 
  • Remove zucchini and arrange cheese around the edge of the zucchini trying not to let it hang over the sides and leaving some tomato uncovered (prettier). 
  • Return to oven until cheese melts, 4 – 5 minutes
  • Remove, arrange three on each plate, sprinkle with basil, garnish with olives and serve.

Notes

You could save the trimmings to add to soup or stir-fry, but summer squashes are so plentiful, I feed it to the compost instead.

Keywords: zucchini, courgette. summer squash

Stuffed Zucchini Cups

We went to the Saturday dinner at the local festival last week.

Normally, we eat outside under open-sided tents but this year, after our heat wave, the temperatures were unexpectedly cool with severe storms in the forecast.

We were moved into the newly renovated salle (town hall).

A lot of people have the mistaken impression that all French people are excessively concerned about the food they eat.

They are concerned, yes. The want and expect a well-prepared meal, but the real purpose of eating is not the food but the camaraderie.

French people expect to talk and argue and laugh with friends and family during lunch or dinner.

If the dinner happens to be part of the summer festival and the whole village turns out, they also expect to sing and dance and make a night of it.

Which is why, even though it starts at 8:00 no one even thinks about getting the first course ready and on the tables before 9:00

And why the music starts at 9:30. She did a set between each course.

Everyone, from the toddlers just learning to the guy that had to put down his cane, danced.

They were still going strong when we left at midnight….. After coffee but before they brought out the digestifs.

We’re turning into real lightweights…..

4 thoughts on “Warm Stuffed Zucchini Cups; the festival dinner”

  1. I’m in the ‘leave it in someone’s car’ boat with my cukes. I’m picking 8 – 10 a day and they’re not small. And there are hundreds of 2-3 inch ones still coming on. I’ve never had a cucumber crop like this. I also have hundreds of tomatoes, but they’re all green. All. Green. I managed to find one today that was sort of red.

    We’re in the midst of our Milford Memories celebration. It started yesterday and goes through Sunday evening. The road is closed and then filled with vendors and food tents and entertainment and…I don’t go. There’s nowhere to park and an almost 10 mile walk is not conducive to then walking around to look at everything. :/

    • Lots and lots of cucumber salads…. or hamburger pickles or mustard pickles or refrigerator pickles….
      My tomatoes are the same The plants are starting to collapse from the weight but all green…
      Too bad about the festival. We used to try for later in the afternoon when the early people were leaving lol

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