This satisfying main dish is the perfect way to use up zucchini that have grown just a little too big for optimum sweetness. The final product is pretty enough for company and packed with nourishment: brown rice, garden tomatoes, immune-enhancing onions and garlic and the pleasingly nutty crunch of almonds and pine nuts make this a family favorite, hands down.
4 pounds medium to large zucchini
1 1/4 pounds fresh tomatoes, chopped (or use canned)
1 large onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, chopped
1 1/2 cups olive oil
3/4 cup parsley, chopped
Sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper
3 cups cooked brown rice
1/2 cup grated cheese
2 tablespoons currants
3/4 cup ground almonds
1/4 cup pine nuts
1. Wash zucchini thoroughly and cut in half lengthwise. Then, using an instrument such as an apple corer, empty the pulp of each zucchini into a saucepan, being sure to keep outer shells intact. Add tomatoes, onion, garlic, 1 cup of oil, parsley, salt and pepper. Simmer until only a little liquid remains, then add rice and simmer until all the water has evaporated.
2. When cool, add cheese, currants, almonds, and pine nuts. Stir with a wooden spoon until well mixed. Stuff zucchini shells carefully with mixture.
3. Preheat oven to 425F. Place stuffed zucchini shells in an ovenproof container. Pour the rest of the oil over them and add salt and pepper to taste. Cook 1 hour in preheated oven.
4. May be served hot or cold.
Adapted from Greek Vegetarian Cooking by Alkmini Chaitow (Inner Traditions, 1989). Copyright (c) 1989 by Alkmini Chaitow. Reprinted by permission of Inner Traditions.
Adapted from Greek Vegetarian Cooking by Alkmini Chaitow (Inner Traditions, 1989).