Zucchini thingies?

YUM!

YUM!

Can someone help me name these things?  I was thinking zucchini boats but that’s just too 80s for me and stuffed zucchini isn’t quite right, but I used up all my creativity cooking this weekend!

I made a really yummy sauce, put it into some zucchini, covered it in cheese and baked it in the oven – in my opinion its about 3 serves of veg for each half a zuch – if not more.  I imagine you could put chicken or maybe ground beef into the sauce and make it a meal in itself.

They are super simple, but because I’ve had a few people message me privately saying that they can’t cook I thought I’d break it down and show how easy it really is (scroll down for that)

For those of you who just want the recipe here it is:

  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 4 stalks of celery finely diced
  • 4 medium carrots peeled and finely diced
  • 1 clove of garlic crushed (or more if you prefer)
  • 400g jar of diced tomatoes
  • 170g jar of tomato paste
  • 1 TBSP Italian herbs
  • pinch of salt
  • pepper to taste
  • chilli flakes (if desired)

Gently brown the onion (using a little bit of healthy fat if you choose – I used maybe 1/2 teaspoon of coconut oil).  Add the garlic and herbs.  Throw in the carrots and celery and gently fry.  Add the diced tomatoes and the tomato paste and gently simmer until the celery and carrots are tender (not soggy though yuck unless you like em like that).  Add in the salt and pepper to your taste and the chilli flakes if you want it with a bit more kick.

Spoon the sauce into the hollowed out zucchini halves, sprinkle with grated cheese (I used 100g between 8 zucchinis) and a sprinkle of parmesan too.

Bake in the oven at 350 (because I was doing a roast at the same time) for 25 mins or until the zucchini is at a texture you prefer.

 

For those who need a step by step check this out 🙂

scrape out the seeds

scrape out the seeds

The zucchini themselves are pretty easy.  You can use a teaspoon to scrape out the seeds but I used an apple corer and it was really quick!  I don’t like to waste things so I blended the seeds up into a puree and will put it in the next soup I make.

Line them up on a baking tray and start preparing the sauce.

 

 

 

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Gently brown the onions


Cutting up onions isn’t fun.  Just chop them up and bung them in the pan.  You don’t want the heat too high or they will burn.  Just gently fry them (in a little bit of fat if you prefer – coconut oil or ghee – and by a little bit I mean like a teaspoon or less.  Then add in the garlic and the italian herbs and gently fry that too.  If you WANT to be brave you can add in some chilli flakes, but if you are not that confident cooking its probably best to wait til you have the basics mastered before you go messing with chilli.

gently fry the carrots and celery

gently fry the carrots and celery

Once they are almost see through and are starting to brown you can add in the carrots and celery that you chopped up.  Don’t be precious about cutting them up 🙂

add in the tomatos and simmer

add in the tomatoes and simmer

and after that has fried for a few minutes pour in the diced tomatoes and the tomato paste and allow it to simmer for about 15 mins.  I keep checking to see if the veg are cooked the way I like them – not too squishy not to hard (also referred to as ‘al dente’ if you want to sound cultured).

 

spoon into the zucchini

spoon into the zucchini

once the sauce is ready spoon into the zucchini (that you had waiting on a tray after you scooped out the seeds with teaspoon or apple corer – if you haven’t done that bit – do it now!)

cover in cheese

cover in cheese

Cover them in cheese (about 100g will do all 8 halves – and a sprinkle of parmesan) and bake in the oven for about 20 mins or until the zucchini is as tender as you want them and the cheese is bubbly!

Serve them with roast beef, grilled chicken, pork chops or just enjoy them on their own!

 

There will be a lot of sauce left over.  It works as a soup (as is or blended), as a base for a bolognese sauce, you can blend it up and make it into tomato sauce, or you can freeze it and make more zucchini thingies another day!

 

 

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2 thoughts on “Zucchini thingies?

  1. Pingback: Meatballs | Healthy Intentions (2014)

  2. I often question veggie servings … I’ve been making a version of these with chicken, and I count each half as one veggie serving since it’s hollowed out, lol.

    Like

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