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Stuffed Zucchini (recipe adapted from Murphy’s Gardens)

When my well of inspiration for recipes that use farmers market produce dried up, I turned to Lori Murphy, a friend and successful nursery owner in Galena, Illinois. Her business shifts gears from mid-summer and turns into a thriving farmstand well into the fall months. I was happy to try out a zucchini recipe for something not breaded or deep fried. I thought this comfort dish would be worth the extra effort, even though I’m usually not one to make stuffed things like mushrooms, deviled eggs, or twice baked potatoes. It contains a nice amount of fresh herbs too.

After I scooped the insides of the zucchini out and prepped the other veggies, I was wondering how a seemingly impossible amount of filling could fit into the scooped out zucchini shells. The answer is that it reduces considerably on the stove before filling. And the flavor comes together beautifully after the parmesan, egg, and cream cheese is added. Lori noted that you can add sliced tomatoes on top too. In her words, “It’s a little bit of work–but worth it. Delicious!” I agree. Try it! It’s good home cooking that your family will really enjoy.

Ingredients

  • 2-4 fresh zucchini, 6″-8” long
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 large green, red, or orange bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup fresh mushrooms, chopped
  • 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
  • reserved chopped zucchini (insides)
  • 3 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus additional for serving
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste

Preparation

Cut zucchini lengthwise down the middle. Scoop out insides of zucchini using a spoon or a melon baller, leaving about 1/2” of shell. Finely chop insides of zucchini and set it aside.

Sauté onion and pepper in olive oil. Add mushrooms, garlic, and reserved zucchini. Cook over medium heat until most of the moisture evaporates. Add cream cheese, egg, parmesan cheese, parsley, basil, and salt and pepper. Mix well and cook for another 10 minutes.

Cool filling slightly and then fill zucchini shells with mixture. Place in baking dish or on heavy rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and bake for approximately 30 minutes at 375° F until golden brown and bubbly.  Top with additional parmesan cheese. Adapted from Lori Murphy of Murphy’s Gardens.

Other Ideas:  Check out my top 9 recipes that use fresh herbs.

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

Now it’s your turn. What are your favorite zucchini recipes? If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Please leave feedback in the comments section below. -Michael

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