Stuffed (Courgettes)

ZucchiniCourgetteThis was the summer of the courgette! Whilst on holiday, I had more courgettes than I bargained for… and in more ways that I had previously imagined: raw, roasted, pan-fried, stuffed in aubergines, in quiches, in cakes, in fried rice…

Courgettes were everywhere!

And apparently needed to be harvested regularly so as not to end up with monstrosities that resemble more elongated pumpkins than delicious green zucchine. (Random fact: Zucca means pumpkin in Italian, so a zucchini is a “little pumpkin”.)

Having consumed what seems like a small farm’s worth of courgettes over the course of two weeks, I’m still surprisingly fond of the little green guys. So now that I’m resettled at home, it’s time to take to the kitchen and be (re)inspired.

Stuffed Courgettes

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium-sized courgettes, halved
  • 2 pork sausages
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 small leek, thinly sliced
  • ½ a clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 medium-sized tomato, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • breadcrumbs
  • Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano, grated

Makes 8 halves, servings vary depending on size of courgette.

Preparation:

1 hour 30 minutes

  1. Cut the onion and leek and throw them into pan with warmed olive oil. When they are slightly golden throw in the minced garlic as well. Once the garlic has also turned golden, put in the chopped tomato. Cover with a lid and let it all simmer. Remember to stir occasionally so you won’t end up having to scrape the pan later.
  2. Take the sausages and squeeze the minced meat out of its casing and into a mixing bowl . Mash with a wooden spoon until it is easy to work with. Add the carrots to the meat, as well as the mixture in the pan (after it is slightly cooled).
  3. Cut off the two ends of the courgettes and using a sturdy teaspoon, scoop out the seedy middle bit so that you end up with eight hollowed out courgette boats. Make sure you leave a bit of courgette at each end so that your stuffing doesn’t spill out.
  4. Chop up the middle bit of the courgette and add it to your stuffing mixture. (Waste not, want not!)
  5. Then start stuffing! Be generous; the more stuffing, the better it will taste.
  6. Line a baking tray and place the courgette halves side by side to bake.
  7. Sprinkle grated cheese on top, then breadcrumbs on top of that to give it a bit of a crispy top. Again be plentiful, especially with the cheese!
  8. Cook in the oven at about 170°C until the middle of the courgettes are no longer opaque. This should take about 45 minutes.

Buon appetito!

PS: When storing these courgettes as leftovers, don’t stack them like logs, but rather side by side. Much like us when we get overly full, these little guys sweat profusely when stuffed.

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