Friday, July 6, 2018

Arugula Potato Purée Stuffed Zucchini Boats

For home gardeners, the inevitable question pops up of what to do with the onslaught of fresh zucchini every summer. I'm pre-gaming your projected zucchini abundance with this vegetarian stuffed zucchini

The recipe is a bit fussy. It does not have a ton of ingredients but has a few extra steps. The result is a unique and delicious dish packed with summer flavor. Of course, you can just throw the zucchini on the grill and call it a day. However, if you are bored with "simple" zucchini recipes. Try this one for sure. 

The zucchini is hollowed out and the flesh is used to make a thyme spiked sauce. The zucchini shells are stuffed with a potato purée threaded with strips of fresh arugula and baked. I finished the dish with a sprinkling of toasted blanched almond leaves. The almonds added some crunch and another beautiful layer of flavor

This recipe is both vegetarian and vegan-friendly. Climb aboard the zucchini boat. You won't be sorry.
Arugula Potato Purée Stuffed Zucchini Boats
Prep Time: 35 minutes 
Bake Time: 40 minutes
Yield: Serves 4 
  • 1+1/2 lbs potatoes
  • 4 medium-sized zucchini
  • 1 plus 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 small onion, peeled and diced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1+1/4 cups water
  • 2 cups fresh arugula leaves, plus a few leaves for garnish
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons blanched almond leaves 
  • Wash and peel the potatoes. Cut them into small cubes. 
  • Cook the potatoes pieces in salted water in a covered saucepan for 20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  • Wash the zucchini and pat dry. Cut a top length-wise off of each of the zucchini and set
  • aside. 
  • Use a melon baller or a teaspoon to scoop out the insides of the zucchini. Salt and
  • pepper the insides. 
  • Place the hollowed out zucchini on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. 
  • Chop the scooped out zucchini flesh into small pieces and reserve. 
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan. Add the chopped onions and fresh thyme leaves to the pan. Cook the onion pieces until transparent. 
  • Add the zucchini meat and stir-fry until the zucchini becomes completely soft. 
  • Season with salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. 
  • Add 1+1/4 cups water and cook for 5 more minutes until everything is bubbling. 
  • Transfer to a food processor and purée. Scrape the sauce from the food processor, transfer to a bowl or a small pitcher and set aside.
  • Wash the fresh arugula and pat dry. Cut the leaves into small strips. 
  • Peel the garlic cloves and mince.
  • Drain the potatoes and reserve 6 tablespoons of the potato water. 
  • Add the potato water, potatoes, minced garlic to the food processor and purée. 
  • Add the remaining 4 tablespoons of olive oil one at a time and pulse after each addition to combine. 
  • Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. 
  • Fold the arugula strips into the potato purée. 
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 
  • Fill the hollowed out zucchinis with the potato puree. Place the reserved lids back on each zucchini. Pour half the sauce over the zucchini boats. Reserve the other half in a pitcher for serving. 
  • Bake the filled zucchini boats for 40 minutes. 
  • In a small naked frying pan, add the almond leaves and toast over medium heat until slightly golden brown. 
  • Remove from the heat and set aside. 
  • Remove the zucchini boats from the oven, transfer to a serving platter, garnish with the toasted almond leaves, arugula leaves and serve with the remaining sauce. 

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