I remember the summers when we had zucchini coming out of our ears – yes literally – we ran out of ideas on what to do with them, and after making 20 loaves of zucchini bread, we just went about nuts. I sautéed them, I grated them and made frittata, I made pancakes, I roasted them, I did everything. One of my neighbors actually came over with a book dedicated to zucchini recipes – I still have the book, it is a classic – but now for some reason zucchini doesn’t grow well in our garden, and every year I hope and pray that we will have bushels of the stuff, and it doesn’t happen. Isn’t that always the case?
So – for the past couple of years I have actually gone to the store and bought some – I know, it seems almost wrong, but I do – because sometimes I find a recipe I just have to make, and I can’t wait for the possibility that we might get a couple out of the garden. I saw this recipe in Cooking Light, and I decided to had to go buy some to try this one out. Boy am I glad I did, these were excellent! The girls loved the stuffing, but not the actual zucchini – so I let them just have some stuffing, and I ate the zucchini, even that was delicious. I had tons of stuffing left over – so I even went back to the store the next day to get some more. What a wonderful way to use zucchini this summer…and if you don’t get any in your garden, this makes buying them in the store completely worthwhile.
- 3 (1.3-ounce) slices day-old whole-wheat bread
- 3 medium zucchini
- 3/8 teaspoon salt, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 cup finely chopped onion
- 1/3 cup canned artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tablespoons dry white wine
- 5 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 3 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
- 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon rind
Preheat oven to 350°.
Place bread in a food processor; pulse until fine crumbs form. Set aside.
Cut zucchini in half lengthwise; scoop out pulp, leaving a 1/4-inch-thick shell. Chop pulp. Place zucchini halves, cut sides up, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper; sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
Heat oil and butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add zucchini pulp and onion; sauté 5 minutes. Add remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, artichoke hearts, thyme, and garlic; cook 45 seconds. Add wine; cook 1 minute or until most of liquid evaporates. Combine breadcrumbs and onion mixture in a large bowl; stir in cheese and remaining ingredients. Spoon 1/2 cup breadcrumb mixture into each zucchini shell. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until just tender.
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