Thursday, December 17, 2009

Quinoa Ricotta Stuffed Zucchini

Another recipe I've been eyeing for a while was this one from Chocolate and Zucchini. It sounded so simple and healthy! Here's how it went down:


3 large zapatillos


175 g quinoa (3/4 cup)

1 1/4 cup vegetable broth

3 T. pine nuts

½ cup ricotta

1 T pesto

Begin by soaking the quinoa for 15 minutes. While the quinoa is soaking, cut each zapatillo in half. (Preferred method, cut off just the top to stuff, and replace the cap, however I was working without a spoon, just a fork, and lacked the precision to make this work.)

¨Place the hollow zucchinis in a baking dish, sprinkle them with salt and bake them in a hot oven for 20 minutes.

Rinse the quinoa, and bring 1 1/4 cups broth to a boil. Add quinoa, and lower heat. Simmer 15 minutes. All the water should be absorbed.

In the meantime, sauté the zucchini flesh with garlic and herbs de provence

toast about 3 tablespoons of pine nuts in a dry skillet (watch these very closely, they burn fast. Here's a tip: if it starts smelling good, it's too late).

Mash the zucchini flesh in a colander, draining it well.

In a medium bowl, mix the zucchini, the quinoa, the pine nuts, half a cup of ricotta, and a generous tablespoon of pesto.

After removing the zucchini shells from the oven, drain any water that has collected in them. Fill the zucchini shells with this mixture and return the oven for about 10 minutes, until heated through.

Comments: Halfway through I became quite preoccupied with these turning out bland. So preoccupied, I forgot to add the pesto! Still, I was worried for nothing, they lacked a bit of salt (I’m a chronic under-salter), but were otherwise delicious. I subbed mixed peanuts and almonds for the pinenuts, as I couldn’t get any in time for the recipe, and it worked fine, although I’m sure pinenuts would make it that much better. Repeat!

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