Have you noticed at most farmer’s markets the zucchini is one of the most inexpensive items for sale? I don’t garden but I’d imagine they are easy to grow and yield prolific results. When we walked up to our market on Saturday and realized we had a total of 10 dollars in cash to spend, I ended up with a whole heck of a lot of zucchini. I like the idea of stuffed zucchini because usually food “packaging” is a bread product, whereas you can’t get lower calorie than squash. I’d never done it, though! I looked up a recipe in my ATK book and it looked way easier than I’d imagined. You MICROWAVE to soften, then the whole thing takes just 10 minutes in the oven.
With the methodology down I put together what I had in the kitchen for this vegetarian filling; the chickpeas and feta give it a punch of protein and you could easily sub quinoa for a bit more. If you want the meat I think this dish would be great with grilled pork tenderloin or fish.If you want to make this for two (or 1), I’d make the whole filling as it makes for the perfect lunch (and sans meat will hold up for days in your fridge). If you’re microwaving just 1 zucchini, you only need about 3 minutes (and 5 minutes for two).
Chickpea, Tomato and Feta Stuffed Zucchini
2 c. water
1 c. bulgar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 c. diced plum tomato
1/2 c. feta cheese
1/2 c. minced red onion
1/3 c. chopped fresh basil
Zest of 1 lemon
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tbsp. olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
2. Slice the top 1/4 LENGTHWISE off of each zucchini and discard (or save to cook later). Place zucchini cut side down in microwave safe baking dish (anything glass). Microwave for 6-8 minutes or until tender. Let cool enough to handle. Using a spoon, scrape out seeds.
3. Meanwhile, combine bulgar, water and salt in a saucepan. Bring to boil and reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer until tender and water is absorbed, about 12 minutes. 4. Combine chickpeas, tomato, feta, onion, basil, zest, juice and olive oil in large mixing bowl.
5. When bulgar is cooked, add to boil. Mix gently to combine.
6. Place zucchini, cut side UP, in baking pan. Gently pack each zucchini boat with mixture (you might have some leftover).
7. Bake in preheated oven for about 10 minutes. Serve.