Middle Eastern Stuffed Zucchini

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Time 1 hr 10 mins
Servings 4
Difficulty Medium

UNITS

SCALE

INGREDIENTS

RICE STUFFING

  • ½ cup White rice , long grain, well rinsed
  • ½ lb Beef, ground, lean
  • 1 small Yellow onion , chopped
  • cup Parsley , chopped
  • cup Dill , chopped
  • 1 14.5 oz can Diced tomato , with juice, canned
  • ½ cup Water
  • 2 tbsp Olive oil , extra virgin
  • 1 tsp Allspice , ground
  • 1 tsp Garlic powder
  • To taste Salt
  • To taste Black pepper , freshly ground

VEGETABLES

  • 3 large Tomato , preferably Beefsteak
  • 2 ½ lbs Zucchini , preferably Lebanese
  • 1 tbsp Olive oil , extra virgin
  • 1 large Tomato , preferably Beefsteak
  • 1 small Yellow onion , sliced into rounds
  • To taste Salt
  • To taste Black pepper , freshly ground
  • 1 14.5 oz can Tomato sauce
  • ¾ cup Water

METHOD

  • In a large bowl, combine rice, ground beef, onion, parsley, dill, tomatoes, water, olive oil, allspice, garlic powder, salt and black pepper. 
  • Remove the top of 3 tomatoes and remove the core to hollow them out. 
  • With a knife, remove the top of the zucchini. Cut each zucchini in half to make shorter. Using a corer or melon baller, hollow out zucchini to make room for the stuffing, making sure not to poke through the bottoms. 
  • Lightly oil the bottom of a large pan or Dutch oven. Slice tomato and spread over the bottom of the pan. Add the onion slices and the cores of the zucchini. Season with salt and black pepper.
  • Using your hands, gently stuff the hollowed tomatoes with the rice stuffing. Then, loosely stuff the hollowed zucchini with the rice stuffing, about ¾ of the way. 
  • Arrange the stuffed tomatoes in the center of the pan. Add the zucchini, stuffed side up, around them. Add tomato sauce and water. Season with salt and black pepper. 
  • Place the pan on the stove and cook on medium-high heat until the liquid starts boiling. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until the zucchini is tender and the rice stuffing is fully cooked, about 50 minutes. 
  • Transfer to a serving platter or separate bowls. Top with sauce from the pan. 

NOTES

  • You'll want to leave about .6cm / ¼ inch rim of zucchini, when stuffing. If you over-stuff the zucchini, it will not cook well
  • If you don’t own a corer or melon baller, you can use a paring knife to hollow out the zucchini
  • Optionally, serve with salad or garlic bread
  • Season with additional salt and black pepper, in Step 6, if desired

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