Sunday, November 29, 2015

Veggies as a Main Dish #SundaySupper...Featuring Greek Stuffed Baked Zucchini

For this week's #SundaySupper, we're focusing on Veggies as a Main Dish! Our host this week is my friend DB from Crazy Foodie Stunts, and he has asked us to share our favorite veggie-centric recipes. This week's theme comes at a very appropriate time -- after a few days of gorging myself at a variety of family Thanksgiving celebrations, I was really looking forward to creating something light and full of flavor. My Greek Stuffed Baked Zucchini features tons of great flavors and textures. This hearty dish is veg-friendly and loaded with vitamins and healthy fiber. The zucchini are halved and seeded. Then, they're filled with a mixture of brown rice, sauteed mushrooms and shallots, feta cheese, and green onions. They're served with a simple chunky tomato sauce that's flavored with oregano and garlic. 

Whether you're planning to cook for vegetarian guests this holiday season...or you're simply trying to incorporate more meatless meals into your weekly dinner menu...this dish is a great option! As an added bonus, the combination of green zucchini and red tomato sauce is perfect for any holiday entertaining. From start to finish, this dish is ready to eat in under an hour. With a veg-friendly dish this good, I promise that you'll never miss the meat! 

Greek Stuffed Baked Zucchini
a Weekend Gourmet Original
Ingredients (serves 4-6 people):
  • 3 medium zucchini
  • 14-ounce can diced tomatoes with garlic and oregano
  • 4-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 1 tbs. olive oil 
  • 1 cup chopped mushrooms
  • 1 shallot, finely diced
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup + 1/2 cup feta cheese
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp. parsley flakes
Step 1: Preheat oven to 375. Combine the diced tomatoes and tomato sauce in a small bowl. Add half of the tomato mixture to the bottom of a 11x7 oven-safe baking dish. Set aside. Add the olive oil to a small non-stick skillet over med-high heat. Heat for 3-4 minutes. Add the mushrooms, shallot, oregano, and garlic and cook until softened -- about 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Step 2: Add the brown rice, mushroom-shallot mixture, feta, green onions, and parsley to a mixing bowl. Stir to completely combine. Cut the ends off the zucchini and cut in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to scrape away the seeds, leaving a boat-shaped shell of zucchini. Spoon the rice mixture evenly into each of the six zucchini halves. 
Step 3: Place the stuffed zucchini halves on top of the tomato mixture in the baking dish. Bake for 25 minutes, until the zucchini is cooked, but not mushy. They should be fork tender, but still maintain their shape. Evenly sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of feta on top of each stuffed zucchini. Broil 3-4 minute, until the feta is softened and starting to brown on top.
Step 4: Warm the reserved half of the tomato mixture in the microwave for 1 minute, until warm. To serve, spoon some of the tomato sauce on the bottom of each plate. Top with 1-2 zucchini halves, drizzle with a bit of the tomato sauce from the bottom of the baking dish, and serve.
These Greek Stuffed Baked Zucchini are so good! The zucchini is cooked tender, but it's easily cut with a knife and fork -- and the filling is flavorful and hearty. The filling features nutty brown rice, earthy mushrooms, a one-two onion punch from both green onions and shallots, and a double shot of tangy-salty feta. Finally, the bright chunky tomato sauce brings everything together. 

This dish is proof positive that you don't have to include meat to have a hearty and filling dinner. I hope you'll give these flavorful stuffed zucchini to your dinner rotation -- if you like olives, please feel free to add some diced kalamata olives to the filling to add to the Greek authenticity. Wait until you see all of the great veg-friendly recipes the #SundaySupper participants are sharing this week:
Sunday Supper MovementBe sure to join the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter all day Sunday! We tweet throughout the day, and we share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly Twitter chat starts tonight at 7:00 pm ET/6:00 pm Central. Simply follow the #SundaySupper hashtag, and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get even more great Sunday Supper Recipes, please visit our website or check out our Pinterest board Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It's easy! You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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