Fortunately, zucchini is one of Bill’s favorite vegetables and I am glad that he likes it because it has a ton of health benefits! When I recently read that it helps lower cholesterol, I decided I need to figure out how to prepare it with some more variety. Although we do enjoy it’s mild delightful taste and texture simply sauteed, sometimes we like a bit of change so that we don’t get tired of it. I also learned that zucchini contains high levels of vitamin C and vitamin A that prevent cholesterol from oxidizing in the body’s blood vessels, thus hampering the onset of atherosclerosis. This awesome green can also help with cancer prevention; it helps avoid complications with with the prostate; can help fight heart attacks and assist with Stroke Prevention and can help lower blood pressure. On top of all of that, they really taste great. You could create something similar using items from your fridge that you have on hand!
2 Zucchini’s, medium sized
1/2 Cup Ricotta Con Latte
1/3 Cup Mushrooms, sauteed
1/3 Cup Red Peppers, roasted
2 Tablespoons Basil, chopped
1 Tablespoon Parsley, chopped
1/2 Cup Onions, caramelized
4 Garlic Cloves, roasted
2 Turkey Breakfast Sausage, chopped fine
2 Tablespoons Parmesan Cheese, shredded
1/3 Cup Mozzarella Cheese, shredded
I planned to have these as a side dish and thought about what flavors would also be good in a stuffed mushroom. I had some left over cooked vegetables and cheeses and decided that the flavor of the breakfast sausage would compliment them well.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Cut the zucchini’s in half lengthwise and scoop out some of the seeds and flesh from the zucchini halves using a spoon or a melon baller. Start about a quarter to a half inch from one end, creating a ‘boat’. Chop and reserve zucchini flesh.
Place the zucchini boats face down onto the prepared baking pan and bake zucchini boats for about five to ten minutes. (Longer if you don’t like your squash firm.)
If you don’t have pre-cooked onions and vegetables, heat olive oil in a non-stick pan and cook until slightly softened. Cool slightly and combine vegetables with the chopped flesh, the Parmesan, Ricotta and mozzarella cheeses. Season with herbs and salt and pepper.
Flip over the halves and fill each zucchini boat with the mixture. (I had a couple of button mushrooms that I also stuffed) Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and bake for about 20 to 30 minutes in the preheated oven until cooked through and until the cheese is melted and begins to brown. Serve immediately.
We enjoyed these with a small fillet of Halibut and some spaghetti sauce with my homemade red sauce. This meal paired beautifully with the 2008 Sbragia Merlot that Bill chose.