It’s zucchini season and I’m once again ‘blessed’ with a plethora of zucchini. So looking for new ways to use up what’s current in the garden I decided to create my own version of stuffed zucchini for dinner one evening. My husband said it tasted like a meatball sub — and as he has given up wheat that seemed to please him greatly.
- two to three large zucchini, 9-10 inches long (or more if you use smaller ones)
- 1 red pepper, diced small
- 1/2 medium onion, diced small
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 12-14 black olives, diced
- 1 stalk celery, diced small
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 5 mild italian sausage, casings removed
- spaghetti sauce
- mozzarella or pizza cheese, parmesan
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 400F
- Slice zucchini in half lengthwise. Using a spoon or melon baller, scoop out flesh, leaving 1/4″ thick. Salt and set aside. If you like your zucchini softer, blanch them in boiling water for 1 to 2 minutes. I didn’t the first time and the large zucchini were cooked but firm. I think I would blanch them for no more than a minute if they are 8 inches or more but not bother for smaller zucchini.
- Heat about a tablespoon of olive oil in frypan over medium heat. Add garlic, onion, celery and red pepper. Cook until slightly softened. Add parsley, basil, black olives, salt & pepper. Heat another minute or two. Remove from skillet and set aside.
- In same pan, brown sausage, breaking up into small pieces. When just cooked through, add vegetables and mix. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Place zucchini in bottom of ovenproof casserole pan. Fill boats with sausage mixture. Top with two to three tablespoons of homemade spaghetti sauce (I used Neapolitan but Basic Tomato Sauce would work as well.)
- Top each with mozzarella or pizza cheese and parmesan.
- Cook, covered with foil, for 30 to 40 minutes depending upon size of zucchini. Remove foil for additional five minutes
These are very filling, one boat will feed a very hungry person.