Sometimes I look back through the recipes in this space and hope
they're inspiring .. yet accessible
Over the past couple of years .. I've had a surprising number of people say “thank-you” for sharing recipes like drip beef .. turkey and zucchini meatballs .. and butternut mac & cheese. The sort of meals that are perfect for a weekday dinner. Of course .. their sweet words of gratitude are often chased with a request for more ..
just like them
My sincerest hope for this little space of the internet .. is for it to be .. not only a source of inspiration .. but also one that's used. I hope printed recipes find their way to your kitchen counter .. and get splattered with a bit of soup .. or stained with strawberry juice
The thought of your iPad opened to this site .. while making greek yogurt pancakes with your grandchild on a Saturday morning .. makes me smile a million times over. At the same time .. true confessions. When I hear from a new reader that they're going to make their very first recipe from the site .. I feel .. happy .. proud .. and ever so
Certainly not every recipe fits this category .. as projects are good for the soul .. every now and again. I remember a time when The Chef was traveling .. and came home to Malaysian Beef Rendang. Or a special birthday cake for someone who doesn't like chocolate .. Bohemian Apple Layer Cake.
In the evenings .. when we sit down for dinner at our house .. most are rarely repeated .. even more rarely cooked from an actual recipe. Sometimes what's our plates are so simple I think .. “nobody would be terribly interested if I wrote about this”
But whatever it is .. though it may be simple, it's always real food that's quite delicious and satisfying.
She photocopied this recipe .. and sent a copy to my inbox as well. When both failed to get my attention .. my Mom made some and brought them to last month's Spaghetti Saturday. We made our own .. the very next day
I know by now to trust her taste buds .. especially when they've been eating .. in Texas
There's a very special binder .. that lives in the kitchen of my brother and his wife. Everything made from one of the recipes it contains .. is the epitome of inspiration and accessibility. The kinds of recipes that work every time .. are full of flavor .. tested and true.
This is one of them
They're the kinds of recipes they've perfected over the years .. scanned from the pages of cookbooks filled with pencil scratches in the margins .. bold notes to always up the spices (especially if heat is involved!) .. the kind pages that have been spilled and splattered on
many times over
Over the years .. I've run across many recipes for stuffed zucchini. It seems there are as many variations .. as categories to place them in. Are they an appetizer? A side? Are they hearty enough to be served as a main course?
Here zucchini are hallowed out .. and then stuffed with wild rice .. olives .. goat cheese .. and spices. From there .. they are added to a baking dish .. along with tomato sauce .. and finished in the oven
So very simple .. and so very delicious. A light and fresh recipe that's a perfect way to enjoy them.
ps: For other recipes and stories from Spaghetti Saturday .. here
- 1¼ cup wild rice
- 2½ cups chicken broth (** or water)
- 2 tsp sea salt, divided
- 4 large zucchini
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 6 cloves, garlic, minced
- 1 tsp red chili flakes (** more or less, depending on your heat tolerance)
- 20 fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
- 20 basil leaves, finely sliced
- 8 oz crumbled goat cheese (** the original called for feta)
- 2 cups kalamata olives, finely chopped
- ¾ cup black beans
- 2 cups tomato sauce (** or 1 jar pre-made)
- ¼ cup olive oil, divided
- basil leaves, thinly sliced
- shredded parmesan, if desired
- In a medium-sized saucepan, combine the rice, water, and ½ tsp sea salt.
- Bring to a boil, cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook until all of the water has been absorbed (~ 45 minutes)
- Fluff the rice and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F
- Cut the zucchini in half lengthwise.
- Using a small spoon .. scoop out and reserve the zucchini flesh .. leaving ~ ½" of the zucchini on all sides
- Finely chop the zucchini flesh and place it in a medium bowl. Stir in ¼ tsp sea salt and let stand 15 minutes to release moisture.
- Spoon the zucchini flesh into a double layer of paper towels and squeeze to release the liquid
- Sprinkle the zucchini shells with a pinch of sea salt each. Let stand for 15 minutes to release the moisture.
- Using a paper towel, blot out the moisture
- Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add the garlic an saute for 30 seconds.
- Add the zucchini flesh and red chili flakes and cook, stirring, until the zucchini just begins to soften (~ 3-4 minutes)
- Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup cooked rice, mint, basil, goat cheese, and kalamata olives.
- Divide the rice mixture evenly amongst the zucchini shells
- Spread the tomato sauce evenly over the bottom of a 9x13" glass baking dish.
- Arrange the stuffed zucchini over the tomato sauce.
- Brush the cut portions of each zucchini shell with ½ tsp olive oil
- Drizzle ½ tsp olive oil evenly over the filling of each zucchini.
- Bake until the zucchini shells are just tender when pierced with a form (~45 minutes)
- Remove from the oven
- Plate the stuffed zucchini and evenly scoop the tomato sauce across the portions.
- Thinly slice the basil leaves and garnish the stuffed zucchini
% Protein: 16
% Carbs: 33
% Fat: 16