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Stuffed Zucchini Gondolas

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Stuffed Zucchini Gondolas

Stuffed Zucchini Gondolas

Jessica Braider
Summer’s the season of bounteous crops of zucchini and yellow squash, which is also affordable because it’s so plentiful and easy to grow. I don’t find zucchini to be the most flavorful or exciting vegetable, but I love it as a crunchy crust stuffed with flavorful filling. I was going to call this zucchini boats but our son Solomon saw them and said they looked like canoes. Recipe tester Samantha McKenzie’s 10 year old son said, ” I don’t generally like zucchini but this dish was great!”
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Servings 6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 3 medium zucchinis 8 – 10 oz. each
  • 1/2 bell pepper any variety, finely diced
  • 1/2 yellow onion finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced, about 1 tsp.
  • 8 oz. lean ground beef or ground turkey or meatless crumble
  • 1 cup tomato basil pasta sauce
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Spray a rimmed baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray. 
  • Cut the zucchini in half lengthwise and, using a grapefruit spoon (or a teaspoon if you don’t have a grapefruit soon) scoop about half of the flesh of the zucchini to create a well in the center, reserving the zucchini flesh.
  • Lay the zucchini on the baking sheet and put half the oil in a small bowl. Using a pastry brush, brush the flesh of the zucchini with oil, season it with a little salt and pepper, and bake it for 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, heat a large heavy skillet over medium heat, and heat the remaining oil. When it is hot, add the peppers and onions and sauté them for about 3 minutes until they start to get tender. 
  • Chop the reserved zucchini flesh and add it to the skillet. Stir in the garlic until it is fragrant, about 30 seconds, then add the meat and brown it for 3 – 4 minutes.
  • Add the sauce and bring it to a low boil. Remove it from the heat and stir in the parsley and the Parmesan cheese.
  • Remove the zucchini from the oven and scoop the vegetable mixture into the wells of the zucchini, mounding as necessary to use all the filling, topping it with the mozzarella cheese. Return it to the oven for 10 more minutes until the zucchini is fork tender. For a browner top, broil the zucchini for the final 2 minutes until it is browned in spots. Serve it immediately or refrigerate it for up to 3 days.

Notes

Scramble Flavor Booster:  Add 1/4 – 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes when you add the sauce.
Nutritional Information Per Serving (% based upon daily values)
Calories 231, Total Fat: 13g, 19.5%; Saturated Fat: 5g, 25%; Cholesterol: 49mg, 16%; Sodium: 349mg, 14.5%; Total Carbohydrate: 12g, 4%; Dietary Fiber: 3g, 10.5%; Sugar: 6g; Protein: 19g
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Keyword Dinner, Gluten-Free, Kid-Friendly, Kosher, Main Dish, Make-Ahead, Nut-Free, Summer, Vegetarian
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