Tis the season for experimenting with all the wonderful fresh veggies that harvest is bringing forth. I've never been one for trying new things with veggies in the past. They were meant to go as a side dish to an entree, not BE an entree. Or so we're taught to believe. This is so untrue. Veggies can be the star of the dish if you so choose. This will become more a reality from now on for us, as my husband and I have decided to cut out the vast majority of meat from our diet. We're not going to become full vegetarian, but we are going to try to only eat meat maybe twice a week, and one of those two days will be of the seafood variety, and cut back on our dairy intake. More on this later.
However, this dish I made before our new decision, and it was so good, I'll probably make it again on one of our meat nights.
I was given some lovely garden vegetables from a friend, (as we don't have a garden ourselves) and so, excited as I was, I had to use them right away. They just looked so delicious! I wanted to try something new with the zucchini that I'd never done before. Thus this dish came to be. (This recipe is not my own. I found it online but tweaked it to my own needs. For full list recipe and directions, see bottom of this blog) oh yeah, did I mention this dish was made in the microwave? Cause it was! But don't worry if you don't have a microwave, this can be done in the oven just as easily. Just allow for longer cooking times :)
Start off with a couple medium, fresh zucchini. Slice them in half length wise
Scoop out the pulp
Brown your lean ground beef (I used TLC Farms ground beef) then add your chopped onion
The recipe calls for bread crumbs, but I went the gluten free route and used some oats instead.
Add your egg, sauce, salt, pepper, and cheese and mix together
Fill your zucchini cavities with the mixture
Top with more cheese
Viola! Delicious stuffed zucchini!
Hayden enjoying his supper. mmm…so delicious!
4 medium zucchini (I just used 2 as there are just the two of us. We ate the leftover meat mixture the next day.)
1 lb lean ground beef (I used TLC Farms ground beef)
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup marinara or spaghetti sauce (I used spaghetti sauce)
1/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs (I used 1/4 cup of rolled oats)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided (I just used marbled cheddar)
Additional marinara or spaghetti sauce.
cut zucchini in half lengthwise; cut a thin slice from the bottom of each with a sharp knife to allow zucchini to sit flat. Scoop out pulp, leaving 1/4 inch shells.
Place shells in an ungreased 3-qt. microwave-safe dish. Cover and microwave on high for 3 minutes or until crisp-tender; drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Remove from the heat; stir in the egg, marinara sauce, bread crumbs, salt, pepper and 1/2 cup cheese.
Spoon about 1/4 cup into each shell. Microwave, uncovered, on high for 4 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Microwave 3-4 minutes longer or until a thermometer inserted into filling reads 160 degrees and zucchini are tender. Serve with additional marinara sauce. Yield: 4 servings.
It was a fun meal to make and so simple. Hope you enjoy!