September 26, 2012

Quinoa Stuffed Courgettes & Tomatoes

Gardening this year has been a bit of a rock-n’roll adventure. When we moved into our house last year, we made big plans for our small garden, and had great expectations of being able to feed from it. We imagined that vegetables would be a plenty. Reality was a bit different. I guess it has been a steep learning curve... We probably still have a lot to learn about gardening, and we also haven’t been very lucky with the weather conditions: far too much rain brought a constant flow of slugs and snails which devoured anything that was coming out of the ground: radish, carrots, spring onions, beetroots, courgettes, squash – they ate them all! The only plants which survived were the tomato plants, which however, have now been affected by mildew, and we’re not sure they will ripen before the plants die.

Anyway, all that to say that we had bought courgette seeds, of the variety ‘rondo di Nizza’, a round courgette type, which I thought I would use to make stuffed courgettes. However, our poor plants never made it to that stage. Thankfully, we found some when we were in France and I couldn’t resist cooking a big batch for my family alongside stuffed tomatoes. Stuffed tomatoes (usually with meat) are a very French end of summer dish that my grandma would have usually prepared. I hope you enjoy my veggie version.

Quinoa Stuffed Courgettes & Tomatoes – serves 6

• 6 round courgettes
• 6 medium tomatoes
• Salt and pepper
• Olive oil
• 1 shallot, peeled and chopped
• 1 red onion, peeled and chopped
• 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
• ½ red pepper, deseeded and finely chopped
• 1 small tomato, deseeded and finely chopped
• 1tsp ground cumin
• 200g cooked quinoa
• 50g feta, cut into cubes
• 50g mozzarella, cut into cubes
• 12 leaves fresh basil

1. Preheat the oven to 190°C.
2. Cut a slice (and save it) off the top of the tomatoes and courgettes and empty them, keeping half of the courgette flesh. Once they are empty, season the inside with salt and pepper.
3. Heat the oil in a frying pan and gently fry the onion and shallot for about 10min until they become soft. Add the garlic and pepper and fry 5 more minutes. Add the chopped tomato, reserved courgette flesh and ground cumin and fry for another 10min, stirring regularly.
4. In a large bowl, mix the content of the frying pan with the quinoa, feta, mozzarella and more salt and pepper. Stuff the courgettes and tomatoes with this mix, add a basil leave on top and add their lid on. Place them in a large oven-proof dish. Add a bit of water at the bottom of the dish and place in the oven for about 1h, until the tomatoes and courgettes are cooked through.
5. Serve warm with a green salad.

No comments:

Post a Comment