Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Something occurred to me recently. I don't make a whole lot of side dishes. I mean, I make side dishes, but they're usually of the boring, low-effort sort. On any given night, you can usually find us eating rice or zapping a Green Giant mixed veggie in the microwave. That's all well and good, but I decided I needed to give a little more love to my side dishes.
Which led me to this. Zucchini boats. I looove zucchini, and I thought these sounded delicious. And they are. And extremely easy. Sounds like a fabulous combination to me!
All you need is a few zucchini, ends trimmed, and boiled in water for about 8 minutes. Then split them in half horizontally, scoop out the insides, mix them with onion, cottage cheese, rice, egg, parsley, basil and salt. Put the mixture back into the zucchini and top it with a few strips of American cheese. Pop them in the oven and there you have it!
This recipe got all sorts of good attention from my hubby and a few friends who I mentioned it to. One suggested serving it with a little marina sauce. Genius... that sounds great! I even think adding a little chopped cooked bacon would add a nice flavor. It really pays off to give a little attention to your side dish! Note to self: do this more often.
(adapted from For Goodness Taste cookbook)
2 medium zucchini
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 Tbsp. butter or margarine
3/4 cup cream-style cottage cheese
2/3 cup cooked white rice
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 Tbsp. minced fresh parsley
1/8 tsp. crushed dried basil
Pinch of salt
2 ozs. sharp American cheese, cut into 16 strips
1. Trim ends of zucchini. Cook zucchini in small amount of boiling salted water for 8 minutes or until just tender.
2. Halve zucchini lengthwise. Scoop out pulp to form boats. Coarsely chop remaining pulp.
3. Cook onion in butter until tender.
4. In a large bowl, combine chopped zucchini with onion, cottage cheese, rice, egg, parsley, basil, and a pinch of salt. Divide mixture among zucchini boats.
5. Place zucchini in lightly greased 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Loosely cover and bake in a 350 degree F oven for 25 minutes. Top each boat with 4 cheese strips. Bake, uncovered, 5 minutes more to melt cheese.
Makes 4 side dish servings.