I decided to do a bit of experimentation on the family today that used the bounty that is beginning to come from the gardens this time of year ... So I dcided to go with a zucchini version of stuffed peppers
The kids pronounced it a success ... Except for the oldest daughter, but she's not a big zucchini fan to begin with.
|From Oh Crock!!!!!|
1 HUGE zucchini
1 large yellow summer squash (looks like a yellow zucchini)
3 cups hashed brown potatoes
1 1/2 lbs ground beef/hamburger
2 cups mixed shredded cheese (I prefer a pizza mix since it's meant to get melty)
2 cup broccoli
Set deep water on stove to boil on back burner & preheat oven to 350•F
1. first size your pans making sure it is large enough to hold both squashes at the same time - if you don't have an oven-safe skillet large enough, use a rimmed baking sheet.
2. Brown the hamburger until no longer pink. Removed from pan and drain, do not wipe pan but you can take out the drippings if you want.
3. Add a little oil to the pan and add the hashed browns, cook for 5 minutes each side.
4. Slice the top 1/3 off the length of the zucchini and squash. Scoop out the insides leaving about 1/4 inch on inside of shell - kind of like a dugout canoe.
5. Chop up the insides that you scooped out (removing any large seeds) about the same size as the hashed brown bits.
6. In large bowl mix together the insides, the hashed browns, and the hamburger (chop smaller if need be)
7. Chop the broccoli and add to the mix, sprinkle in 2/3 of cheese mix. Blend thoroughly with your hands or spoon.
8. place boats in boiling water but turn off the heat and let sit 10 minutes ... You may have to do this twice flipping it if the squash is longer than your pan.
9. Pat inside of canoes dry and season to taste.
10. Pack meat mixture into canoes heaping it up a little. Place them carefully back in the skillet or on the pan they will be baked on.
11. Top with the remaining cheese (I put the extra filling into a loaf pan and baked it right along with the skilleted canoes)
12. Bake for 1/2 hr.
Let stand for a bit after removing from oven so cheese can set up. Slice into serving sized portions ...
Things I'd change:
Add some chopped onion in with the hashed browns or hamburger depending on how you like them ...
Use smaller zucchini and cut off the ends, then hollow it out all the way down - Then stuff it with filling ... When cooked, slice into rings ...
Use some bread crumbs or cracker crumbs in meat mix to help absorb some of the moisture which comes off the squash boats as they cook ...
Use sausage instead of hamburger to change taste (not breakfast kind, something with some bite) but will have to rinse out as much of the fat as possible ... Although it herbed stuffing mix is used, then the slickness would not need to come from the meat.
This definitely going to get made again
The recipe leaves plenty of room for variation as you can see.
And it was easier than it sounds like above ... If you do more than one thing at a time (like cooking hashed browns &soaking canoes at the same time) you will really save time.