I am proud of myself on this one. Yes I am!
Since I’ve been spending my weekends at the City Market lately I’ve been taking that in to consideration when thinking of what to prepare for dinner. So I’ve had veggies on my mind. What can I make with veggies?
Lots of things!
This time I chose something I’ve wanted to make for quite awhile now…Zucchini Boats
Yummy zucchini boats.
I read several recipes and liked this one the best. Though I didn’t follow the recipe while cooking dinner tonight I must have read it enough times because mine was very close to hers. There were a few differences but not many.
I started out by scooping the centers out of the halved zucchinis. I bought 4 zucchinis but 4 seemed too many. I chose to only use 2 and I think it worked out perfectly.
Before stuffing them I rubbed the inside down with EVOO and sprinkled some salt and pepper on each one.
*Side note: I did not cook my zucchini prior to stuffing them. They turned out good but the zucchini itself was still a little crunchy. I think that next time I might put them in the oven for just a few minutes, 5 max, and then stuff. I think the additional time in the oven on their own will add flavor as well because the natural juices will puddle in the boats and flavor the filling even more. Just a thought.
To prepare the filling I browned 1 lb of hamburger seasoned with salt and pepper of course. On top I added half a yellow onion, half a red bell pepper, 1 large jalapeno and 3 garlic cloves. All of the veggies were chopped of course.
Doesn’t that look pretty. Almost reminds me of Christmas with the red and green. Heads up people Christmas is right around the corner. In fact it is exactly 4 months from today!
I almost forgot to tell you all something. This was my first time cooking with red bell peppers. People have told me they were sweet but for some reason I had never believed them. They are indeed sweet. I was quite surprised at how sweet actually. But since I added the jalapeno the flavors balanced quite nicely. I think I will be cooking with red peppers again in the near future. I’ve become a fan. =)
Once the hamburger is cooked, drain and return the mixture to the pan. At this point sprinkle in a little bit of taco seasoning and about 4 oz of cream cheese. I didn’t measure the taco seasoning but I’m guessing I used about 1/5 or 1/4 of a packet.
Stir all together and then start stuffing your boats.
I then topped them with some shredded mozzarella cheese.
Bake in the oven for 20-ish minutes. And Whala!
I don’t even have the words. Let me take a minute to compose myself.
Ok I’m better now.
I’m telling you they are that good!
Here’s the recipe:
Stuffed Zucchini Boats
- 2 large zucchinis, sliced in half, centers scooped out
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
- 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 jalapeno, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1/4 packet taco seasoning
- 4 oz cream cheese
- mozzarella cheese
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- In a large skillet brown the ground beef. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add onion, red bell pepper, jalapeno and garlic to the hamburger. Salt and pepper your veggies too. (I salt and pepper every layer when I cook.)
- Once the hamburger is cooked through, drain and return to the pan. Add in the taco seasoning and cream cheese. Stir to combine.
- For the zucchini halves, sprinkle with EVOO, salt and pepper. (Again layering that flavor.)
- Fill the boats with the beef filling. Fill those babies up. The more the better.
- Sprinkle mozzarella cheese on top of each boat. Some of the cheese will fall on the pan. Don’t worry about this.
- Bake for 20 or so minutes. When the cheese starts to brown it’s time to take them out. The zucchini will still have a little crunch to it but I kinda liked it.
- Serve with a nice salad or eat on its own. I just had one of the boats and it filled me up. But my zucchinis were quite large.
Any ideas on what I should do with the other 2 zucchinis I bought?
P.S. One more day and I’ve met my 7 day posting challenge. =)